So I might suffer without fail the vengeance of leaves Crumbling, vein by vein, to the docks of autumn's dust And burn again in a rasping year My fled blood Both woke and broke Flood and voice over the sea-turning town. So that the wail of the crickets might knock and enter Each sad shadow passage of the pulse I woke Burning in the shining rivers that skip out of sight. In the helping hurt of the one-armed weather Flinging hailstones and adders Down the ocean-thieving tunnel of the sky Against this head I swore all summer dumb While the ministering crickets in the booming grass Chanted phylums of my blood about to be said And I stood in the summer's drum Surrounded By the roaring going of the year. Ignorant of thistlery we walked in our mystery Arm in arm like the burning boughs Friends against death in the summer's long breath, And like the sun we sauntered Drunk and wandered Through the closed book of the heart; And I was sky and sunlight in the chapters of the grass. And understanding I sang: Oceans in acorns my strumming mermaids are.