Eventide – by Jenevieve Carlyn Hughes

As the first bud unfurls in dew-speckled dawn
and the garden tools clang in the shed,

couldn’t we keep our quicksilver twilight
when the landscape dreamed in ochre & frost

and only moss graced the fieldstone footpath
of dusk-lit quartzite? When crystalline lichen

climbed the split-rail fence, the rusted wheelbarrow
at rest, the last blush of autumn all but weaned

from the warp & weft of these vines? Beneath
our buttermilk moon and sweet-pea stars,

a bristle-broom sweep of birds foraged amidst
these sepia acres and seed husks. Hidden

in the hush of this spiced-cider earth, a pair of hearts:
two cherub tomatoes, still on the vine & bright

as banquet candles, solstice berries, paper lanterns,
late-season fruits of a sun-steeped climate

ripening with each turning year. Beyond the velvet
fringe of evergreens at the far edge of the field,

always a muffled rush & purr from the freeway,
travelers seeking elsewhere—and the world

spinning again. Remember how we stayed
still, wishing for a vernal earth?


Jenevieve Carlyn Hughes lives near the Long Island Sound, a stone’s throw from a railway and a couple of miles from a nature preserve with a thousand acres of coastal forest, sand dunes, and salt marsh. Her poems have been published or are forthcoming in Connecticut River Review, Northern New England Review, Canary, Heimat Review, and other places, such as the anthology, In the Garden: Community Storytelling on Food, Ecology, & Place (Torrey House Press).