“Four – Words and a Poet”


For almost all my life, I’ve known that words
were thick like leaves upon the cottonwood,
like starling feathers on a wheeling flock,
flashes on the water, glimpsed through the clouds.
For just as long, they’ve hidden like hedge birds.
I’ve had to chase them out, and beat them good
and hard with graphite sticks, with rope and rock,
to keep them from dispersing through the crowds.

But have you, though, ever felt them when they’re right?
Have you felt them in your bones or felt them break
every heart you have, then heal them back
into one heart that beats hard as you write?

That’s why I gather words and why I take
my bones and hearts and strengthen what words lack.

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