You have to wait for them in the dark to come to the porch for your salty leather shoes, the cagey yellow-eyed foxes. Tied together and lit on fire they don’t dig a burrow but disappear between the rows. The flames shimmy up the wheat and smoke whorls up like a swarm of bees out of honey, or a lion’s body,
the carcass still maned and regal, as if napping. A bone-house, full-up with comb, its immaculate wax hexagons angling rib to rib—see the artistry of bees? Their girlish choice of cage? The skin hums, the swarm constructs, as bees do, with godlike perfection.
Jawbone hill, big hummock of grass-grown ghosts. O Samson, what happened to the donkey’s teeth—did they shatter? The donkey had been gentle. And your wife? The girl was such collateral damage. Nameless, she turned out like the foxes and the grain, all burned up. And you? You fell in love with Delilah. [End Page 158]
Rosalie Moffett was a winner of the 2012 “Discovery”/Boston Review poetry prize. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in The Believer, 32 Poems, Field, and other journals as well as the anthology Gathered: Contemporary Quaker Poets. She lives in Indiana.