Though fire and water dominate the imagery, neither can exist without oxygen -- that is, without breath or pause. And in Mesa's poetics, each of these moments opens up into a world of making sense of "what is, what was" and what can be: "leaves raise their silver hems / to walk though puddles not yet formed."
Mechanics of Early Autumn
Migrant workers pick late tomatoes,
the rows half-tidy, the last before the men
pack and move on, leaving beehives
half-fallen from a tractor, combs empty.
Lilac fails yellowing grass. Steeples finger
the hammocked sky, insignificant rebellions
you would say, simple details like cracks in a mug
cast as sadness. Glaze cracks, china chips,
the day is not unraveling. And still
on the drive, leaves raise their silver hems
to walk through puddles not yet formed.