Orioles live in the elms, and in classical verse
the length of the vowels alone determines the measure.
Once and once only a year nature knows quantity
stretched to the limit, as in Homer’s meter.
O this is a day that yawns like a caesura:
serene from the start, almost painfully slowed.
Oxen browse in the field, and a golden languor
keeps me from drawing a rich, whole note from my reed.
~Osip Mandelstam “Summer Solstice” translated from Russian by Stanley Kunitz
Summer is a pause calculated carefully by the Creator — a caesura of daylight so long drawn out, luxurious and indulgent, we forget our need for darkness.
To sleep these short warm nights, we curve inward just as we curled in the womb, floating on the hope and relief cool mornings bring, a rebirth into light.
This love is like the jade flower,
A perfect, waxen curl,
Embalmed by the sea,
Arrested in time and space,
A swollen cesura
Of hope curved back on itself
Into fetal consolation.
~Serena J. Fox, “Jade Flower” from Night Shift