Becoming familiarwith a body,we till, doze, mow,weed, spray, spade,plant and parcel.In the warm glowof a fading trash fire wesalvage, saw, hammer,nail, brace, side, seal.I've never owned dirt beforeexcept a sack of potting soil.No past place to plantseeds otherthan my womb.But your children grown,my children grown—and glad to have usoccupied,this ground is oursto shapeand swaddle.In this late-lifehoneymoon house,too late to wakein the night tocrying babies,still I turn toward youlike a young wifeand you reach for me,a young husband [End Page 88] in the soft dark, as ifwe have done thisall our liveshere in our owngeography. [End Page 89]
Darnell Arnoult is the writer-in-residence and co-director of the Mountain Heritage Literary Festival at Lincoln Memorial University in Harrogate, Tennessee. She is also co-editor of the literary magazine Drafthorse. Arnoult is the prize-winning author of the poetry collections Galaxie Wagon and What Travels With Us and the novel Sufficient Grace. Her work has appeared in Appalachian Heritage, Asheville Poetry Review, Nantahala Review, and Southwest Review.