On My Own, The River Unheeding

Posted by on Jan 30, 2008 in Death and renewal, Poetry | 0 comments

I write away this stolen hour in the early light of dawn because I must. I polish and refine the words that came forcefully into my mind last Wednesday as I returned from Denver, exhausted and emotional. Poetry steals your soul and empties the dark and light places in your heart, so giving it up is like handing a piece of yourself to friends and strangers alike.

Somewhere far below, through the deep of sky,

The wisp of clouds,

The skim of earth,

All that was my father lies.

I trace the broad curve of the Mississippi to the Ohio,

The Ohio to the Green,

And for a flash of this swiftly running time he rests beneath me,

Alongside his lady wife,

Her beauty slumped beneath the black earth,

The passion that drove them both

Muffled by the weight of sky.

This roaring metal box is not my tomb,

But death waits ever patient beyond the double windows.

Where the trace of atmosphere is made of frozen glass

Ready to cut the breath from my lungs

As swift as an arrow’s flight

I look cautiously for angels in the sky

The ones that mama said would bear us all to heaven

Where life would continue like it did below

Only no dirty dishes or checkbooks to balance

The search is fruitless, and my heart draws my eyes again

To the dear and dreadful landscape

To the place where I learned to crawl, to stand, to walk

They did not teach me how to fly

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