V. Penelope Pelizzon

Human Field

            Now it snows without sticking, the invisible

                                    air given a ghost’s body by motes

fleet as the  fireflies’ sexual isotopes

                        igniting the meadow with little half-lives,


            but colder. A starling flock, disrupted,

                                    ascends and circles twice in loose

precision, high enough to seem the very


                        negative of snow: emphatic, demanding,

            warm-blooded, though their bones

                                    are hollow and their bivalve hearts

lighter than a sanded clam shell


                        or the whitest pearl.

                                                            Winter’s revenant

            invites you into it, and there you lie

                                    while the bleached sheet, accumulating,

translates you to an angel in a solitary bed.


                        Beat your wings to leave your signature,

            sole mark on the virgin manuscript.

                                    Or, still now, the figure weeping on a tomb.


What are you hiding from, in a body of snow?


                        A touch and it melts on your finger.


            Because this is not your element, even if

                                    you learn to lie in it, unblinking, and watch it

falling from a bloodless sky,


                        faster now, faster, till all the field is white.