The afternoon is quiet despite a fullness of birdsong. I am tempted
to shush them with a slow finger to the lips and a whisper.
Before long, I hear an airplane and the birds hush,
as if to notice God, and I remember how it feels to be amazed.
There is one thing new under the sun this afternoon and he is learning
how to run in the grass of this green, green park between chirps
and caws and the buzz of the far away plane. He looks just like his mother
as he lifts a pinecone, says its name, brings it to me. He smiles against my kiss
on his cheek the way his mother always does and I give thanks for the blue
of their blue, blue eyes. I told his mother once that I could not be her friend.
That was a while ago, now, on a bench, in a different park (the one by the river),
on a different afternoon. Now, this afternoon, we sit atop the green dew
and share a blanket, familiarity, the watching of two blue crows in a curse-filled
aerial battle, and this one new thing under today’s yellow, yellow sun.
Danny Earl Simmons is an Oregonian, a friend of the Linn-Benton Community College Poetry Club, and an active member of Albany Civic Theater. His poems have appeared in a variety of journals such as The Pedestal Magazine, Naugatuck River Review, Off the Coast, IthacaLit, and Fifth Wednesday Journal.