Six-inch worm exposed
On the surface, having fled
The saturated ground after rain –
Recoils when touched.
In Darwin’s book on worms
(which came to him after
Natural selection) he imagined
The entire landscape, all the dirt,
Even buried deep, having at one time
Or other passed through the digestive tract
Of worms: The world itself arriving
Already processed, intricately sifted
And pre-sorted. The rain has stopped,
Perhaps only for a little while.
Virga from the clouds,
But nothing reaches the ground.
Watching you walk, the grass
Where you just stepped
Springs back up, blades rising together.
David Francis draws from his work experience as an archaeologist, visual art curator, college teacher, and public art coordinator. For nearly 30 years his poems have appeared in literary journals like Ploughshares, The Iowa Review, Poetry Northwest, New Orleans Review, and many others. His artwork has been juried into many group shows, including the upcoming Biennale at Bellevue Arts Museum.
Copyright 2018, David Francis