Lake Effect, Spring 2012, Volume 16: Heat

Joan Colby



Only June and we’re haying the horses,
Last year’s bales almost depleted. The first
Cutting weeks off, if ever. The sky
A flatiron, a whitish sheet
Threadbare with longing. Every morning
We check the forecast. Another scorcher,
No rain in sight. Red bullseye
On the weather map. The broken records,
Wells running dry. Whirlpools of flies
Envelope the woodlot the horses shun
To stamp in baleful sun. Small stingers
Abrade their long-lashed eyes. Sweatbees
Settle on our naked shoulders. The chorus of
Heat raises its ecclesiastical voice.