After the Storm – a poem by Diane Elayne Dees

After the Storm

After a sudden storm, when the viridescent
sky darkens and the limbs cease cracking,
a Christmas tree ornament gleams
near a giant limb dangling from a small tree.
I reach for the wayward bough, but am stopped
in my tracks. It is a rain-soaked hummingbird,
this tiny jewel. Frozen in place, we stare
at one another. Then a shock of emerald
and ruby, shiny with rainwater, mined
from a storybook, lifts little wings
and disappears over my roof.
For a moment, I wonder if I really saw it—
a celebration of everything bright and delicate
against a foreboding sky. Now I see it
in my mind’s eye and carry it with me,
a celebration, however tiny, of joy,
against my own foreboding sky.

Diane Elayne Dees’s chapbook, I Can’t Recall Exactly When I Died, is forthcoming from Clare Songbirds Publishing House; also forthcoming, from Kelsay Books, is her chapbook, Coronary Truth. Diane also publishes Women Who Serve, a blog that delivers news and commentary on women’s professional tennis throughout the world (

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