Dedicated to the memory of Mary Oliver.

When the weight of hot water percolates through coffee
And Love occupies the kitchen pouring pancakes
When snow clings stubborn to branches and porch ledges,
And blankets the autumn earth with two storms’ linens
When ice lingers above, and cold, wet wind whips between—

When laundry is humming hot in the hallway
And yesterday’s abandoned dishes now steam clean,
When this evening’s ghormeh sabzi bubbles fenugreek
And disguises itself among Love’s maple syrup infusion
When all virtual chains are checked to suffice for satisfaction—

When Quiet peers out among the morning bustle
And Mary’s memory creeps liquid behind still eyelids
When favorite writers—who introduced sages long lost—
Begin to thin away as with a thickset crown of youth
When they whisper: Look. Listen. Awe.

Now, engrave.

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