An invitation arrives
in the morning mail.
Before you have said yes or no,
slip into its coat sleeves,
and on your feet,
the only shoes bearable
for many days' travel.
Unseen, the two small fawns
grazing in sun outside the window,
their freckled haunches
and hooves' black teaspoons.
Abandoned, the ripening zucchini inside the fence.
Krakow, Galway, Beijing—
how is a city folded so lightly
inside a half-ounce envelope and some ink?
That small museum outside Philadephia,
is it still open,
and if so, is there a later train?
The moment averts its eyes to this impoliteness.
It waits for its guest
to return to her bathrobe and slippers,
her cup of good coffee, her manners.
The morning paper,
rustling in hand,
gives off a present fragrance, however slight.
But invitation's perfume?—
Quick as a kidnap,
faithless as adultery,
fatal as hope.
TODAY IN SLATE
The Ebola Story
How our minds build narratives out of disaster.
The Budget Disaster That Completely Sabotaged the WHO’s Response to Ebola
PowerPoint Is the Worst, and Now It’s the Latest Way to Hack Into Your Computer
The Shooting Tragedies That Forged Canada’s Gun Politics
A Highly Unscientific Ranking of Crazy-Old German Beers
Welcome to 13th Grade!
Some high schools are offering a fifth year. That’s a great idea.
The Actual World
“Mount Thoreau” and the naming of things in the wilderness.