A Cargo of Green Hearts
I can feel the waiting of trees.
cold holding its blue breath.
if it could end soon, winter.
the knuckles of ice that bind it.
everything that has been held back.
please be ready to whisper something to
me, Durga. place the weight of
your leg over mine. I have been
waiting so long. birds gather
in the trees with their magnetic
longing. time readies its small
fast hand. now.
teach me how not to wait.
the long sleep awaits, sleep of nailed shut windows
silent sleep of the wordless cold. we have become so apart from
the old suffering, the bundled unease, the daily staggering
into the teeth of storms to find skinny food, the snow that drops
quiet as a smothering owl upon our backs, so far from it
that when spring buds, dearly as it does, we no longer
reach up to touch its emerald face, we no longer stain our
knees on the grass of kneeling. instead, we lug around
our old crosses in a New England way whining about
the rain and slush. that we are not dead never occurs to
us and so maybe we are not but even so we are dying
so slowly from something that no longer has a cure.
and the snow fell. if I were about to die
I would call you first. the apple
trees are bare, the last shriveled fruit
devoured by deer. somewhere above
the moon surely exists behind the sky.
I know love exists the way I know the
moon exists even without seeing it.
likewise my blood, faith. I am fully
within the house of me today and my
heart is big. the trees are cottoned
in snow, their winter attire. an icicle
accuses the ground. I am thinking of you
because of the tiny snowmen we
made on your sister's porch. a long time
ago but the snow that melts
earth takes up and drinks. we are
saturated with it. the memories, tree and
fruit and bareness; one with
everything I am, a sum, especially in winter.
if you are of one heart but not many
if all of your being here longs for the
long walk to the river between the tall trees
who hold the silence between their
deep knees and the sky firmly
in the air, if you could seed your
body out like the grass and abandon
as the fingers of the sun rotate
you and in that rotation slow as an
old dream you find yourself wondering
truly is it is you who follow the light
or the light that follows you?
down by the river the questions are
all like that, the same kind you might
ask with the back of your head resting
on someone's thighs. listen and tell the truth:
how we complicate ourselves
how we make more of all this than could
ever fill the country of our small lives.
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