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Vespers: Gregor Mendel and Steam

ISSUE:  Winter 2004

Not plumes. Not plumes

from the teapot’s throat.
    But force, unseen, the space

between plume and throat—pure steam,
    a cleft near the porcelain throat.

Nightfall on the teacup, the window,
    the breaths of the winter ewes.

Nightfall. Nightfall. Dark breach
    between breath and ewe.

And what force, what force, now,
    will carry our dormant souls?

Not breath. Not cloud.
    Not plume. Not plume. Not

shape—Holy Father—but gap.


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