Green Noon

At this hour of June the clock of summer chimes twelve green times; the seasons, spinning stop. The world like a green top balances at noon. Nothing here can change. Fields in a green blaze leap but do not burn. Lovers down long days stay as on Keats' urn; all remains strange. For a round week tree shadows lie like the same die stamped over and over on the grass cloth. Beetle and moth do not bore to the leaf's core, through the bottom's cheek, through the green cover stretched out taut. now even thought, like a rash spoon plunged in the full cup of this noon, fears to stir lest one green drop spill, and the days shrink on the green hill, and the fields sink, and the blooms stain, and the moth nest, and the lovers part in the dry lane -- and the clock starts to strike again.

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