In the leafless woods today, spring peepers cry,
A hopeful noise, save for the heavy blue
Line at the sky’s bright hem, that turns the sunlight
Strange, more molten, saturate with night.
As the cold front moves in, the hermit too
Wants to cry. By midnight they’ll be frozen—
Not dead, but back to sleep. In this false season,
Hackberry, ash, sweetgum stand naked. Still
The thready note like tinnitus goes on.
All day he’s heard, and hasn’t. In the sun,
He’s longed to strip his habit off and feel—
Could be—the touch of springtime on his skin.
Could be, but isn’t. Relentlessly the chill
Unrolls again. For now, these small hopes die.