Well something died or sounded like it
Did. There was a sharp crack, but not
Loud, a twig snapping or a glass
Marble checking into another.
The sound became constant.
Then the lurching. It probably was just
Me moving that way but I knew it
Wasn’t. I might see it all. The
Difference with which the minutes
Clicked past carrying foreboding
Like a small caliber pistol
Plus it was dark. I could hardly see
Anything but I knew it was all right,
All correct, all lined up ready to inspect.
Then the words started coming on their own.
They weren’t about to stop or claim
Inspiration. They belonged there with
Or without me at the reins.
I retired to the edge of the mesa where
I could look down on the whole thing
Not away from anything, not connected in any
Way, but so sure of myself I bought a pack
Of smokes and lit them one after
Another until they were gone
THE STONE BIRDS
The stone birds shattered
On the tiles just below the garden
Arch. Broken heads, bodies in
Pieces, more still than death is
Able to make us understand. There
Was no blood. It was not a great
Tragedy, just an unwinding, a slow
Unwinding of late morning
As we returned from the hill near
The edge of the sea, from watching the
Morning slide its fingers into the cove
Through the woods. You said the sun looked
As words might have looked had
There been sound beyond the soft
Ticking of the waves into the coolness.
No, it was just the fact they were
Broken. The end of a sentence or
The beginning of a lesson we hadn’t
Contracted to understand.
“Raccoons”, the gardener said, “They will
Do things like this occasionally. I think
they do it just to see what it looks like,
Just to see what will happen.”