It’s been there ever since
I came to live here, seven years ago
And who knows how much longer before?
Each year it grows grayer and less defined.
I think it was once a shirt, from the bits of shape
It still holds--a child’s shirt, most likely.
Grotesquely cloudlike, it changes with the wind:
hammerhead shark one day, a flirty
girl dancing wild at a party. Too much to drink,
I tell her, and she smirks at me.
Today the rag is formless, except for its bottom edge
[(a sleeve, it must have been), that alone mimics the motions
of the lighter leaves.
It seems like a mouth, with neither
face nor head to balance it: a mad, insensate ghost
chattering endlessly to itself
among indifferent leaves.