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PARINI, Jay


Blessings


Blessings for these things:

the dandelion greens I picked in summer

and would douse with vinegar and oil

at grandma’s little house in Pennsylvania,

near the river. Or the small potatoes

she would spade to boil and butter,

which I ate like fruit with greasy fingers.

Blessings for my friend, thirteen

that summer when we prayed by diving from a cliff

on Sunday mornings in the church

of mud and pebbles, foam and moss.

I will not forget the fizz and tingle,

sunning in wet skin on flat, cool rocks,

so drenched in summer.

And for you, my love, blessings

for the times we lay so naked in a bed

without the sense of turbulence or tides.

I could just believe the softness of our skin,

those sheets like clouds,

how when the sunlight turned to roses,

neither of us dared to move or breathe.

Blessings on these things and more:

the rivers and the houses full of light,

the bitter weeds that taste like sun,

dirt-sweetened spuds,

the hard bright pebbles, spongy mosses,

lifting of our bodies into whiffs of cloud,

all sleep-warm pillows in the break of dawn.