The Earth Exhales

What happens in the moment right before the sun slips below the horizon?

This poem, entitled “The Earth Exhales” tries to provide the surface answer.

The poems operates on several levels, but I think something interesting stands out.  I concentrated on using as few stop consonants as possible to end lines.  In fact, the first line is the only hard stop I had, and in several drafts, I had originally substituted the word “water” for “liquid.”

The Earth Exhales

At dusk, when the sun is liquid,
the world believes.
Trees hold up the clouds
with only the strength of their branches.
Light slips under this umbrella,
and in the moment hovering,
before the shadows swim like whales into our view,
you hear the earth exhales

Out on the horizon, there’s an ancient face,
invisible and staring back at us.
We feel the wind through our hair,
and we remember when.

Originally published in Wildflower Muse in 2016.


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