The Ripening

synanpses 1
By Tobi Cogswell

It is summer. You are fifty
going on twenty, she is your girl
next door. She invents the words
you want to say, laughs
as she climbs a tree, dares you
to come get her, move in
close and hold her—

her hair wild like blackberry brambles
offering themselves and their fruit,
her kiss sweet as tea.
Wild and sweet, bare knees
and skinned elbows, she reaches
her arms around your neck, pulls
you toward her.

That secret place—you go back
again and again.
That luminous wind
and the mockingbird.
Your voice. Her voice.

Previously published in Bellowing Ark, Fall 2008

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