Out of Season - Lorrie Ness

The window is a barrier
between my morning coffee and the outside world.

            I sit with my hands cupping a mug,
            looking right through.

Bird flight has become the bitter drive of hunger,
a dark V slicing white sky.

            I watch geese land in the field,
            rooting for the kernels that remain.

The tree line is a lavender haze  ̶
frosty crowns reflecting the sunrise.

            Their bare limbs do nothing to stop the cold wind
            from scrubbing tractor-rippled ground.

It is November, and the soil is dry
lifting easily above the rows of cut stalks.

.           My eyes linger on the nudity
            of earth and wood.

Bleak is the name we give to these weeks
between leaf and snow.

            But after the harvest, I can see things plainly
            until summer covers it back up.

Natural light has faded even the flowers
printed on mom’s old tablecloth.

            The fabric hanging over the shaded edge
            blooms out of season against my knee.

Lorrie Ness is a psychologist, bird watcher and nature enthusiast in Virginia. She particularly enjoys drinking coffee in the backyard and writing under a yellowwood tree. In her free time, she haunts the trails in the mountains where she finds inspiration for her writing. This spring and summer she is focusing on planting more native trees and plants to create a diverse backyard habitat.

She has enjoyed writing since childhood, particularly poetry. It is the activity that brings her the deepest sense of tranquility and peace. She has published in a variety of journals, including Thrush, Sky Island and Palette Poetry. She was twice nominated for The Best of the Net. Her chapbook Anatomy of a Wound is forthcoming from Flowstone Press later this year.