Labor Day

by George Perreault

dry white stalks
bend stiffly
into the dregs of summer,
muted birds,
finches mostly,
 
some sparrows,
side-stepping toward
seed heads, reaping
the cone flowers, shasta
daisies, black-eyed susans,
 
rummaging
inside a lavender
till the whole bush
shakes its come-on
far and wide, and if you’d
 
sit with me a few,
the breeze
freshening now
as it slips down the foothills –
just a while –
 
we’re given this day
and maybe the next,
hollow-boned birds
working the harvest –
come, catch your breath

George Perreault’s most recent collection, Bodark County, features poems in the voices of characters living on the Llano Estacado.  He has received awards from the Nevada Arts Council and the Washington Poets Association, and has served as a visiting writer in New Mexico, Montana, and Utah.  His poems have been nominated both for the Pushcart Prize and Best of the Net, as well as selected for 16 anthologies and over 80 journals.