Paradise Lapsed

Lilac cones fat dripping
cotton frill and sugar dust
are yellowing now and deflated
sag from a pucker of hulls
up near the splayed wires
and stripped bones
of a telephone pole.
Under a green awning
a man with a drooping white mustache
smokes a cigarette trailing
burnt remains through marble mounds
of strawberries in paperboard
flats softening in the early steam. Can it be
time already for blood-veined
chard and kale’s bitter ruche?
What happened to the white nub
folded inside a husk
where flavor was a milky promise
and if bitten, decanted only earth and lime?
No golden egg
nestles in the belly of a creature
prematurely cleaved. Already
honeysuckle fall heavy
at the roadside, dermis
curling back and dew sliding
ungathered
by any tongue
other than the blind proboscis
of a potato bug pushing
into a nameless season.
Day is a half-life,
here and also
gone.
 

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