Morningtide – Diana Dinverno

Inspired by Footsteps in the Snow by Dale Nichols, oil on canvas, undated                                                                                                                

pulls him from our bed
to do what he must.

He is a man cultivated
in seed, soil, furrows
stretched to the horizon,

yet his eyes
fill with sea

as he makes his way
beneath distant, undulant hills,
through frozen drifts
shadowed like rivers,

from shed’s slope,
across a pristine plane,
to reach the harbor’s stacked
squares and rectangles,

while an ocean of astonishing blue
spills across the prairie,
the land’s memories of oyster beds,
coral, finned creatures.

He’ll walk the grain
elevator’s crib-lined floor,
breathe wheat
suspended in air,

enter the barn
on a straw-scented swell,
tend cows, coax milk to warm
the bucket, cheek pressed to flank.

He’ll retrace his footsteps
in the snow,
return to the house
for breakfast,

to kiss my seashell ear.

Diana Dinverno’s work has appeared in The Gyroscope Review, Westchester Review, Orange Blossom Review, Panoply Magazine, The MacGuffin, and other publications. She is the recipient of the Michigan Poetry Society’s 2019 Margo LaGatutta Memorial Award, the Barbara Sykes Memorial Humor Poem Prize, and received a nomination for Sundress Publication’s Best of the Net 2020, and a Pushcart nomination in 2021.