Genesis 3:19

The sunlight slanting in
through the window,
lingered on a bowl of fruit,
each waxen piece siphoning dust
from the light to immerse
itself in a world where
an apple or banana wears
as much fuzz as a peach.

No one notices this since
no one dines on the mahogany
table upon which the bowl sits.
No one’s moved more than one
of the chairs from beneath
the table in months,
though handprints muss
their dusty shoulders
on the way to the living room.

The tablecloth has yellowed
around the footprint rings
of teacups which helped read
the morning papers, except
for the five that rest outside
upon the threshold. But in
two days, her name will appear
on page C-8 of a seventh.

After that, sunlight will slant
beneath the green marquee,
to linger on the spray of silk roses
atop the mahogany veneer box.
A twirling wind will whirl motes
of west Texas, gilding the teary
lilies peering over prayer books
that, as one, proclaim,
“dust to dust.”

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2 thoughts on “Genesis 3:19

  1. Ok, I really love this one, for obvious reasons. You have no idea how many bowls of wax fruit I’ve seen gather dust over my lifetime just as you described. In west Texas, it’s almost impossible to keep dust gathering on everything, unless you dust every single day or have double-pained windows with an extra layer of plastic over them. (Not many do that.) I love the meaning of the poem too, Joe. Very lovely. I’m getting to read more every now and again. So glad I can read more of your writing. It always inspires me!

  2. Awe, the loneliness discovered in these tender words and details that bring it all into light, like dust, unmoved chairs, fixtures and even an obituary.
    Mahogany
    Waxed fruit
    Dust to dust

    Well written, heart felt

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