Summer Wedding

New married, they lived one summer
by an apple tree,
and watched the fruit
turn green, then oxblood red.
And watched the sun
and watched the shingled sea.

August came
untended in the long grass.
At picking time
he found a bright pot
and shook the apples down,
his hands around the branches.

He was awkward in his wedding ring:
the smallest finger rubbed it,
like a tongue with a new tooth,
where it blazed against
the thick gray boughs.

Where apples fell,
they stewed in pockets
of unclipped grass,
in earthen cider smells,
in a garden quick
with snakes and sowbugs.

He stood among them
in a fine independence,
satisfied to not be
mad with growing,
while Sara watched him
from the kitchen.

She must have seen him as he was:
not simple and apart,
but a kind of metamorphosis,
some mythic thing —
legs, wrapped and rooted
to the earth by snakes,
his arms in apples,
and all his skyward fingers, leaves.

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