A child finds himself wandering alone
In a forest, seeing a campfire and, drawn to it,
Finds dangerous companions, thinks,
What is it I am afraid they will take from me?
Not the place of my birth, or of my rearing,
Or the place from which my ancestors sought refuge
Not the things I’ve inherited –
Blue eyes, brown hair, big feet and a guilty conscience –
Or the illusion of permanence that is itself
The only permanent thing I know.
My life? Such a fragile thread!
you ask why I don’t write a poem
about what’s coming down all around
us as we speak
what’s to say about a life in the wilderness?
but it’s not like I haven’t tried god knows I’ve given it
all I had, spent my quota of midnights
so many poems fluttering in the blowback
rhymes scattered like shell casings
meter cleft in the borning
aground on the shoals of the dead
wanderers always think they have a home
beyond the vapor trail but you and I,
my weeping friend, know we’re already there
the time has come, my dear, for reckoning
‘tis the past and not the future beckoning
and so in this hour of false redemption
we offer thanks for a return
to mere abomination
A man is in a sphere
all he knows is
what hits the outer membrane
–a series of taps,
red, green, sepia
a great shaking
and rumbling pervades,
from these scraps
emerges, like some
great and vast
above a sleeping figure.
My country is like the willow
envious of the sky piercing oak
unaware that the tall, stiff,
top-heavy and shallow rooted
oak, standing amidst the remains
of its kindred, pines for
the resilience of the willow
This first appeared in Exileschild 11/22/16. Strange how poetry adapts to its context.
How swiftly came the killing season
swept in from hinterlands
just when we had remarked upon
the sameness of it all.
How soon the must-not-be-named
Weren’t we standing there,
thinking how wise it was
to not raise a ruckus
about minor disturbances,
how preferable to simply
turn our backs to the foul wind?
What good will be our platitudes