this is the sound of crows

and she is there
at the edge of the field

she is gathering flowers
and the sky
surrounds her

we are not lost

we are not forgotten

we are hopeful
and the book of days is empty
and in the town we left behind
the poets have all
been hung

this is the truth

this is the sound of crows
after three months with
no rain and she
is there

she is gathering flowers
and they turn to dust in her
delicate hands and
the poem inside her heart was
never meant to be read

was never
meant to be written
and the dust falls through
her fingers with the slow
grace of angels

and we are far from home
but hopeful


but the horse is
the rider blind

the doors of the weak
are always waiting
to be kicked in and
i have been promised
rain for
three months now

i have watched
the rivers fade to

i have watched the
hand that holds the flame
reach out to the burning boy
and the smell of his pain
was familiar

the sound of trains
and the screams of young girls
as the showers were
turned on

this is destruction
far beyond the feeble scope
of god

do you understand?

the mother is starving
and has nothing to eat but
her child

the child is sick
and will be dead before
the season of famine
is over

if the word you choose is
there will be no one
with the courage to

On the Death of Your Father

[i](for John Swenning)[/i]

Enchanted – listening there to subterranean conflicts of love,
Lad and Dad, dark echoes of me and my old man.

That invitation tendered – and declined – would have rendered skill
In me, wisdom of the knotty, passionate weal

Of reciprocal head-butting that embraces love and hate between
Father and son, tethering them like cats on a clothesline, clawing,

Incessantly united, minutely, painfully aware
Of the wefts of each other. No other souls mingle in the play.

Had I hefted that proffered burden, I would now be steeped
In the loving turmoil, been counted wise in that hour when the

Circle dissolved, dispersing discord, leaving only love and despair.
The poetry you sing of your old man dwells within me,

A bittersweet echo of mine, of mine.
So I learn through hollow bulletins that I am forever banned

By time and choice from the mysteries of you and your father.
I am forbidden past the outer rim of your grief.

I don’t know what thing I regret the most.

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