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Dacha by John Martin

“There lives the dearest freshness deep down things…

And there are graceful girls, in fragrant meadows,
beneath the towering shadows of the trees,
collating flowers, to give to one who waits
absurdly, sulkily, to hear their prattle…
Though, more, to see their silly smiles light up
one tiny room with all of nature’s ways,
the scent of grass still on them, and the taint
of sylvan spaces gashed with spattered sunlight.
Behold the Kindly Ones! Who one time turned
a very different face to he who learned
the hard way what a soft life really says:
the sound of rivers tinkling like pianos
in the indifferent distance, nakedly
patrolled by virgin fingers, frilled with lace.

Featured in New Lyre Summer 2022 (forthcoming)

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