Southern August



August’s cool cheek  is welcome against mine

 as I walk, flushed and fast, in the pale gold of winter sun.

 The taste of her kiss is in the tang of new apples

 and the sugary grain of the pears that I carry. 


 She slips a sinewy arm around me

 when I stand on the wharf

 winding me into her wind,

 prodding and poking me

 with buffeting hands

 affectionate and intimate,

 she ruffles my hair and 

 plants an icy peck on my forehead

 in a spray of sea water.


 August raises her arms to the sky


 she begs the firmament

 to fill her empty nests

 and branches bare.



 for spring’s caress

 of green to cover her shivering 

 undress,  August folds in upon

 herself with secrets that only

 winter’s breast can hold,

 decaying things in the chilled ground

 things unripe, unmade

 the frozen foetus of petrified growth

 the naked grub  in cocooned stasis.


 Soon, though, she will turn her face into 

 the mellowing sun

 whose blazing ardour will penetrate her 

 cold core

 like a honeymoon embrace,

 transforming the ice maiden

 into mother,

 her  warm belly ripening until

 she births herself anew.



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