Magnus, 13th Century
perched on a branch outside
this window is really blood. Next door
the walls grow after the bald cousin
rolls away the wheelchair;
the mother a candle baptized in wax.
Now, grass is straw,
vines are hands reaching onto the house.
Smoke precedes fire. The '65 Chevy,
metallic blue, purrs from the garage:
"I grew up here."
The flame sugars
and bends the objects around it,
a bright alchemy of light and smoke.
The timer lights go on.
Through the Sandhills,
I slid under an orange sunset
dark owls screeched and coyotes bayed
the gravel danced like sky
in my headlights.
That night leaving the reservoir,
I drove through late dusk,
both light and evening
like light and evening.
The metallic sky
bent in the fenced hills. I braked
in the gravel
and watched the vultures stare
from fence posts; their indifference
patient dark lanterns.
I climbed out, gripped the barbed wire
I could taste the machines
in the air and just thought
about all of us, waiting.