It must be a shock for dark coal
        to wake from its mossy dream
    to the sound of heavy hummingbird wings.

It must seem strange to trade in ancient
        sunlight beams for artificial bling
    that snaps through silver strings

to light our nights while today’s waves
         slant through windows, make my swamp cooler
    chug and blow through yet another hot summer.

I want to live under this sun’s power,
        not the fuel from a thousand-year-old bough.
    I want to feel the heat inside me,

to sip it like rain from a drunk honey bee.
        I want it to lighten my blood like wine,
    to remind me how thirsty we were last

summer, how carefully the grapes
        collected each drop in their oval orbs
    while through the kitchen window

we listened to summer’s music
        and brewed our morning coffee
    blithely burning those would-be diamonds,

those knights in sooty, sequestering armor
        that rumbled past us on an endless, forgotten train.

Jill Burkey