[b]A Soft Whisper[/b]

Leaves listless in the grayed snow

Gravel peeking from snow clouds

Brown brittle stalks steel themselves

against the October onslaught.

Something green and growing

Huddles beneath the shifting snow

Curling into itself braced

Bent and bowed but resilient.

Cold winds worry the withered ones

Who fold fallen to shelter the unseen green

Curve in against it

Like a mother protecting a child.

Layer upon layer it lusts

For fine and fragile things

Tucked against the terror

The trauma and the tremble.

Winter winnows out

The weak and wraithlike

Misses the potent possibilities

Of rage balled like a fist.

It survives the shattering

In spite of the night

That caves in on the white

Thinking it has won.

On a still and silent night

A soft whisper can be heard,

“I shall rise and roust

come Spring and soft sun.

“I shall unfurl,

new and necessary

green and growing

no matter the season’s sins.”

[b]Towers have a history[/b]

Towers have a history

Of falling down

Their ragged rumble

Epitomizes my vulnerability.

Slumped and draped

Spiked into a macabre pose

Lines across the moonlit night

Dog’s feed upon the bare bones

Of our peaceful fantasy.

The steely breath

Breathed through the streets

found it’s way here

smothered my calm interlude

froze me to the bones.

The big lie exploded

Shattered limbs and values

A twin set of carcasses

Gave truth to my mother’s fears.

A notion in a moment

That we are nothing

But shifting sands of history

No monuments can replace.

Towers have a history

Of falling down

Their ragged rumble

Epitomizes my vulnerability.

[b]The Teacher[/b]

“My girl,” she rumbled

Pushed the hide scraper

Against the meat,

Cut me to the bone.

“Get rid of extra stuff,”

she flicked at sand flies

pelting like moths to a flame.

“Holah, the army gathers,”

like men at the bar

after last call and you

send off your scent.”

“My girl,” she said, sideways,

set aside her filleting knife

after carving out the choice pieces.

“These you keep,” she smiled

patted the thin pink meat.


the guts and gore away.”

The bucket slapped

When receiving the bounty.

“My girl,” she said, huffing,

“At the top of this hill

berries bunch in clusters,

hidden from the hunt

and hunters.” I stalked

her shadow as we climbed.

“Aiyee,” she exclaimed,

eying the bannock on the griddle.

“This is women’s work,

worrying this place for stuff.”

“They hang together, them.

No need for hanging there

Alone and aggrieved.

Go find someone to teach.”

by Carol Desjarlais
([email]ibntv [at] telusplanet [dot] ca[/email])

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