The day is wet and it will rise
like tropical mold on a loaf of bread.
It is unnecessary and arrogant
and slow. It is damp and deaf
from the rain’s rhythmless drumbeat
on the night’s tin roofs. So I rope
the clouds in like a paniolo
and hoard them in rocky pasture,
silver wire strung as afterthought
around the perimeter,
and watch the ferns curl their fingers inward
finally chastised. As the clouds grow fat
I wring them out into a corner of porous
earth every three days or so. Otherwise
they graze as quietly as stoned sheep.
After several weeks, when the heliconia
has turned to kindling, I belly-flop
in the last of some tidepond’s brackish water
and watch the black crabs dance.
I bury my fingers in the gasping sand.