Sarai in Human Nature’s Apple Grove

“Hereupon Antipater threw away his garments, and showed the multitude of the wounds he had, and said, that as to his good-will to Caesar, he had no occasion to say a word, because his body cried aloud, though he said nothing himself…” Flavius Josephus, The War of the Jews

Men are philosophical flowers, Sarah.
Fruit with chia seeds will be writing in your
Mouth. My princess; naming is edgewise damning.
Gathering olives

In a graveyard’s dumb and polluted love, I
Reach the end again. Divine sparks that double
As load-bearing words; in each word: a thousand
Epics and people,

Sarah. Wounded veterans’ bodies, if they’re
Suited to their souls, are just names without turn
Signals. Winter’s youth is the γλυκύπικρον
Madness co-active

In the garden yonder. Inevitable
Concepts, letter-shaped, have polluted love with
Policy. My senate; we fill ourselves with
Books, and our shelves with

Dust! Come look! My fingers exploded! Cowards
Have to kill their coward, or die. My earring
Keeps on switching ears. It’s a wildly better
Season for knowledge.

June, a childish judge, is the opposite of
Hope. It’s now, and haply, it never gets knocked
Down. It hurries nothing to death. Winemakers,
Loosing its freedom,

Put the apex predators in their places.
Daring to be darling, our cento-like re-
Demption rings refreshingly. In a million
Ways, the true poets

Say ‘No comment,’ Sarah. But we’ll ignore their
Liquid eyes, and shelter in place. The future’s
Crazy, wrong beliefs are unknown, but music –
With its blank canvas

On them – has a bottom and top, like maps with-
Out desire and terror. In the chain of beings,
Knowledge and desire have the most tumultuous
Love affair, claiming

Heat that doesn’t rise has to go down fighting.
Sarah, hours, reading their minutes’ minds, know
What Augustus said to Octavian. Meaning’s
Greater than ever!

Jake Sheff

Jake Sheff is a pediatrician and veteran of the US Air Force. He's married with a daughter and a crazy bulldog. Poems and short stories of Jake’s have been published widely. A full-length collection of formal poetry, “A Kiss to Betray the Universe,” is available from White Violet Press. He also has two chapbooks: “Looting Versailles” (Alabaster Leaves Publishing) and “The Rites of Tires” (SurVision).