Everglades Rapture


Slowly the torrid alligator peeks

above a Water Bonnet blanket.

The drowsy mate this wooing reptile seeks

seems bored stiff and far too hot to fake it.


A tiny toasted twittering lizard

emerges on an afternoon romp.

Pirouettes in air and like a wizard

vanishes into the searing swamp.


Rain, a long absent love, confesses,

begins with constant gentle caresses.


Umbra sky appears as ardent ash.

Clusters of cloud crushing cymbals crash.


Bursting into tropical deluge,

the reviving nectar does suffuse.


The grass river sap streams.

A golden panther screams


and on princely Hamlet’s mortal coil

sun sets a rare and stunning vision —

from wild tempered steel sky does boil

the veiled apricot eye of Eden.


Soon, hummocks lie embraced in sated air,

balm of wet white shoe polish and sulfur —

odor of growth and decay — and the glare,

full rising moon, lends a lavish lemon encore.



― appeared in Expressions, August 2004