Early Release ©

By Roy Dean Doughty
Written July 28th, 2008

Listen here for my reading of “Early Release.”


Spread out like green lace doilies parallel
To the ground, these cedar branches
Serve as the perfect infrastructure
For a spider’s web, whose silken cradle
Becomes, this morning, the incongruous
Expression for a beauty alive in the very
Gut of cold predation.  A soft, green pollen
Has collected in this little hammock,
And as the breeze gently lifts and rocks
The bed, more pollen from above snows
Down to fluff its cushions.  How we long
To rest in the hand of this delicacy, and be
Again, that body of spirit — as soft as feathers —
Whose assemblage of death and loveliness
Makes such a lilting motion, so that we gaze
Up, in wonder, as if, from the pellucid swell
Of gravity’s ponderous sea, we might take
One step, two, fall forward, ascend,
And soar out of the confines of flesh —
That prey for lurking spiders —
To rest our cares in this intimate beyond.
A car drives by on the street, just one
Of many, and shakes the cedar,
As, pulled back from this green otherness,
We feel the swell of a different order
Of assemblage.  The canopy trembles,
And our two eyes are not glad.  Just here,
At the outskirts, a small and inconceivably fine
Shimmering has signaled to us of death,
While we, still bound in the heavy reds
Of incarnation, stood helplessly below,
Rooted in mire, our vision running back
And forth, back and forth, in the green-laced sky,
Like a soul that is lost in the infinite forests of light.

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