Maryvale Park after the Solstice
On a warm day for January, pond
water clouds over weeds and oak leaves,
ghosts of all I see in summer.
I expected cold, crisp, lifeless water, even
a skim of ice that a glance
would shatter. I imagine silence, not birds.
Five ducks cluster in a space no
bigger than a puddle. One duck dabbles
for fish she cannot see. Others paddle
in place. The mallards' green heads bring
color to this landscape. Hidden birds chirp
from the trees. Above us, a flock
swoops through this park just before dusk.
Today the sun stays past five o'clock.
The new year inches closer to spring.
Marianne Szlyk is a professor at Montgomery College and the editor of The Song Is . . . Recently, she published her second chapbook, I Dream of Empathy, with Flutter Press. Her first (Listening to Electric Cambodia, Looking Up at Trees of Heaven) was published by Kind of a Hurricane Press. Her poems have appeared in Long Exposure, Poppy Road Review, Of/with, bird's thumb, Cacti Fur, Snapping Twig, Contemporary American Voices, Jellyfish Whispers, Napalm and Novocain, Silver Birch Press, and other online and print venues including Kind of a Hurricane Press' anthologies. She hopes that you will consider sending poetry or flash fiction to The Song Is . . . at firstname.lastname@example.org