David Roderick

Dear Suburb

Must you tremble
when cars trap shadows,
or when the neighbor’s apricots,
terribly bitter,
fall on the lawn at night?
Like the vine and the trellis
I want to hug you from behind
the way a friend
surprises a friend.
Awake beneath my bedspread,
the stars’ crooked branches,
I also need the calm
of a child’s boxed beach.
We’ve carved our feathers
to the smallest shavings.
Our hairs grow gray.
Something yet lives wild
in our nettled dens.
The dead return
as lampposts, gas guzzlers,
gnats frenzied
in a laptop’s moonish glow.
Said another way:
there’s something fraught
about this night
that knows our whereabouts,
its weight pressing down on us,
Wake up, wake up.

David Roderick
“Dear Suburb” first appeared in Poetry, December 2009.