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 I lie down with the last light watching the robin who takes it in
on the highest dead branch. I lie down and I am not diminished, it does
not hurt me. The pears are still hanging by their thread of stem,
growing heavier day by day and in the mornings the robin sways with
them, feasting before they fall, nothing having loved them but the robin
and the robin is enough. These days my mother gathers her small lists by
fistfuls-- there are things she needs to tell me. Every day there is
more. Everything is yellow, the last light, the leaves, the meadowlark
landing on the wire.
 Born in this month, sometimes I think I was born loving
disintegration--the fields receding, vines and husks ploughed under,
this last offering of pears or when I was a child the peaches on the low
branches hanging over the fence, unpicked, falling, covered with flies.
Now the light is dimmer, smoky as bar light, or something rubbed
tenderly, the copper bottom of a pan that won't shine and I see the
girl sitting across from me, cupping her elbow, streaked yellow then
blue, how I finally understood she was telling me that hurting enough is
its own meaning. I'd almost forgotten the bruised flesh worn like a
badge you hope another will see, and having seen, catch you before the
next fall. 
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Author:Scates, Maxine
Publication:Prairie Schooner
Article Type:Poem
Date:Dec 22, 2008
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