(for NJ in Menemsha) 

Crafty Odysseus knew 
that time is this soft wind 
from the east falling and 
falling across our pewtered 
lawn, dropping sweet moisture 
where dim rainbow doves emerge; 
endless and sudden. He 
stopped it with a spear 
to bring his splintered family 
back—a clever trick, but 
its sequel is troubled, ambiguous: the aging 
hero, heavy with honors 
and the pull of old journeys 
steps off an Ithacan cliff. 

Sorcery subtle as weather 
or unfolding chimney smoke 
risky as upland boars 
the traveling pitchman found. 
Corrupt displacement was the rule, 
each healthy urge turned monstrous, 
upside down. And who am I 
to judge that pilgrim’s lies, swung 
against lies to clear his own 
path home? 
                  So you in your time 
and me in mine, this quiet space 
a charm against unquiet days, 
I trace dove murmurs in these 
roosting oaks, and put my boots 
up on the rail; and simplify. 

MICHAEL H. LEVIN is a lawyer, solar-energy developer and swing-shift writer based in Washington DC and Menemsha MA. He has published poetry in numerous periodicals and has received several journalism and poetry awards, most recently in the Writers Digest 8th national poetry competition (2013). Information on his prize-winning debut poetry collection, Watered Colors (Poetica, 2014) is available at www.michaellevinpoetry.com.
The Adirondack Review