Photo: Gentl & Hyers






Keepsake

It is always raining
in the hours before the sun,
when leaves boil on blacktop
and cats bolt across the road
like phantom runners.

The way is measured in red,
caution yellow,
and shadows
standing like cedars
at a treeless graveside.

A discarded umbrella sighs
from the gutter.
The sky opens up in a sooty wash
above an abandoned earthscape
of shattered beer bottles,
house condemned,
and no trespass.

Outside, in half shadows
I wade through high grass
to save a spider's web
and press it hard against paper,
spun silver on red.

—Laura Treacy Bentley, Huntington, WV