Diluvian Dream

By Wilmer Mills 1969–2011 Wilmer Mills
All afternoon I walk behind the mower,
Imagining, though paradoxically,
That even though the grass is getting lower,
What I have cut is like a rising sea;
The parts I haven’t cut, with every pass,
Resemble real geography, a map,
A shrinking island continent of grass
Where shoreline vanishes with every lap.

At last, the noise and smell of gasoline
Dispel my dream. What sea? Peninsulas?
They were the lands my inner child had seen,
Their little Yucatáns and Floridas.

But when I’m finished, and Yard goes back to Lawn,
I can’t help thinking that a world is gone.

Source: Poetry (July/August 2013).

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This poem originally appeared in the July/August 2013 issue of Poetry magazine

July/August 2013
 Wilmer  Mills

Biography

The son of agricultural missionaries, poet Wilmer Mills grew up in Brazil and Louisiana. Mills earned both a BA and MA in theology from the University of the South, and worked at a variety of jobs during his life including carpenter, sawmill operator, baker, farmer, and white water raft guide. He also served as the Kenan Visiting Writer at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
 
Acclaimed as a careful practitioner of . . .

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Poem Categorization

SUBJECT Activities, Gardening, Jobs & Working

POET’S REGION U.S., Southern

Poetic Terms Sonnet

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Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

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