This is a poem I’m dedicating to Kate McKinneyCake, who knows why. And this is a picture of me I took by accident by pushing the wrong button on my computer, because I like accidental photos.
p.s. If you don’t know Damien Rice’s song ‘Accidental Babies’ from “9,” go download it immediately, then be prepared to weep.
Echo or Loss
First the windows yawned and then
the final flakes of paint twinkled
to the ground. The south chimney tilted
like Jacob Marley’s nightcap, while
inside, a nest of swifts too small
to fly gaped hungry mouths, cried.
Even in the death throes of this house
where I dreamed myself sickly thin
in the chill bedrooms; even then
something had the mercy to attend to one
white horse who grazed silent
in a plot dull flat and blazing
dry. I passed her every day
on my way to the seminary
where I had enrolled in the task
of transformation. Suddenly
years have passed since I saw
through a crack in the unmoored
shutters a strange boy drying
his hair by the fire. The house
is buried now in the earth’s slick
green. Beyond the side gate the lazy
bees swim in the ether of the boneyard.
Was it I who broke the mare’s thin back?
Was I who wished her sleep?