Afternoon Respite

Afternoon Respite

An Afternoon Respite by Mabel May Woodward, c. early 1900s.

Afternoon Respite

July afternoons blaze gold and bright
like the glow of her favorite gown.
Not a breeze to break the baking heat
in her dusty garden

She retreats to the cool green bank
of the sofa to dip her tired brain into the brisk stream
of a story, paddle her fingers in the flowing narrative,
drift like a golden leaf into the dimming dusk.

In the red room the orchids bask in the late light
bending down to peer at her pages
wondering if they too
can escape the solemn oppression of four o’clock.

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