after Samuel Barber’s Sure on this shining night, lines from James Agee

A dozen swallows swoop and frolic
sickle-slash the stillness, at my back the sun,
my shadow’s long, their bellies softly lit.

Sun-bathed catbird cocks her head and tail,
a lonesome cricket sings its meditation

High summer holds the earth
all is healed, all is health––
shadows’ shifting shorthand need not shape us.

My steps land soft, wheels whir behind––
an inline skater whooshes by, the swallows flit
one dips his wing warm-lit
a passing pilot cuts the power, glides

silent to press an atmosphere
all held––an unseen law––kindness.