The hill in front was green with the singular deep colors of summer. On the right, the weather vane at the highest point of the roof the outline of an old man driving a dark carriage in whatever direction the wind blew, the inflexible edge of morning an illusion of safety in his hands. Just beyond, the hard features of the yard, the fence down along the side edge, a brick walk, untended flowers thick with the mercy of rain and heaven steaming slowly in the noon’s heat. The strum of cicadas in the distance. Inside, in the small back room, she slipped past the darkened shades, past the leather chair that pressed against the bottom of the window, past me, fastening her stockings. She counted out her steps. The wallpaper crossed through the door and down the hall. The dresser drawers were partly open. The room spun. Nothing is an accident. She passes between worlds. I blend into the colors of the walls, a thin roll of cigarette ashes on the window sill, on the floor a curl of red string. I stir like grainy sad dust across the floor, try to catch the quick rattle of the lamp as the door closes, the lull in the sound of clouds passing across the trace.
Jonas Zdanys is a bilingual poet and translator whose poems and translations have appeared in many magazines and journals, among them American Poetry Review, Connecticut Review, Crosscurrents, Field, Poem, Poetry, Sewanee Review, Yale Literary Magazine, and The Yale Review. He is the author of thirty-nine books, thirty-six of them collections of poetry written in English and in Lithuanian and of translations from the Lithuanian, most recently The Thin Light of Winter: New and Selected Poems (2009) and Artistic Cloning: Poems by Agnė Žagrakalytė (2010). He has received a number of prizes and book awards for his own poetry and for his translations of Lithuanian poetry into English and was the subject of an exhibit at the National Library of Lithuania on the occasion of his 60th birthday (http://www.lnb.lt/parodos/2/). He has taught at Yale University and the State University of New York, served for more than a decade as the state of Connecticut’s Chief Academic Officer, and is currently Professor of English at Sacred Heart University, where he teaches creative writing.