currants of color
as in spices and herbs,
as in safety and ginger—
currents of water
have a way with words, too,
paddlefish, large mouth bass,
tiny vertebrae, bottom feeders
when the weather comes in,
mixing metaphors,
birch and mullein slip
deeper into the stream
and somewhere else color rises, 
currant and current,
the scent of opium in tea

Michael H. Brownstein work has nine poetry chapbooks including A Period of Trees (Snark Press, 2004), Firestorm: A Rendering of Torah (Camel Saloon Press, 2012), and The Possibility of Sky and Hell (White Knuckle Press, 2013). He is the editor of First Poems from Viet Nam (2011).