10:06 AM Posted by James Owens

The Man Who Is Going to Lie Down among Autumn Flowers


Days of near constant rain, until the grass
stands in water—
weather a dull bass roar in the trees
just beginning to change colors,
matte in the noon rain-light.
Six wild turkeys dripping as they cross the path.
A drowned mole floating in the puddle
between roots of a big oak,
fur clean and sleek black, shiny as broken anthracite.
I’m thinking of the poet Dennis Brutus,
his Letters to Martha from prison
and the poems of exile. Don’t kid yourself,
I think, torture is never for information,
always for the pleasure of the torturer,
or to assert the power of the state,
which is the same thing. Then a meadow
rustling under the sheets of rain, purple thistle
threaded into the tangle of thick ragweed,
tapestry. As if that word would lift it all
above the quotidian, as if it needed to be lifted.
There must be something that connects Brutus’s
poems with this field, something more
than the fact that I’m here now. Something.
The inclusiveness of the world. Expulsion.


Note: This may be recognizable as a revision of an earlier post. It was just a casual, daybook sort of jotting then, and now, I hope, it has become a poem, though without changing an awful lot. Nice when that happens. If it happens.



Sorlil said...

I remember the previous post, lovely detail. I really like this, there is something intrieging about the relationship between the landscape, the narrator and the narrator's contemplation of the other poet. It definitely begs many readings!

James Owens said...

Sorlil: Thank you. The landscape, I think, is important. I've been noticing that more and more in my recent poems....