Blessed are the Boots

Blessed are the boots crawling over wire, posts,
the purple-fringed timothy and bronzed
bobbing rye, burdock, sandbur, cocklebur

and sow thistle, the stuff of cuffs and laces and socks,
the smells of skunk cabbage
rolled in palms, mallow, milkweed, rhubarb,

and grass, yes grass, grass, held to the face
with hands graceful and steady like a tobacco buyer
might crush and rub a recent harvest

and elevate to his most sensitive nub,
green globes of balloon vines hollow and sticky,
Japanese lanterns when held to the sun,

Chinese fireworks when popped in the palms,
ditches drying congested with crickets
and June bugs hovering over them,

thistle-thick pastures scraping and scrubbing,
whirligig moths startled by morning,
tiger swallowtails and their feeble

tubes in the burbling froth of nectar,
siphoning with twisted tongues
the flower’s fragrant brew.

By Jeff Burt