The dog and I push through the ring
of dripping junipers
to enter the open space high on the hill
where I let him off the leash.
He vaults, snuffling, between tufts of moss;
twigs snap beneath his weight; he rolls
and rubs his jowls on the aromatic earth;
his pink tongue lolls.
I look for sticks of proper heft
to throw for him, while he sits, prim
and earnest in his love, if it is love.
All night a soaking rain, and now the hill
exhales relief, and the fragrance
of warm earth. . . . The sedges
have grown an inch since yesterday,
and ferns unfurled, and even if they try
the lilacs by the barn can’t
keep from opening today.
I longed for spring’s thousand tender greens,
and the white-throated sparrow’s call
that borders on rudeness. Do you know—
since you went away
all I can do
is wait for you to come back to me.