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I came here from temporary
and perpetual rages—the whole sky
of wind. Secret birds
take the ruin of garden.
Hail carefully cuts out
the unseen side, the open veins.
Dirt offers its fragrance
When the nest falls,
I open the twigs and find only
crickets with their gasps
and clicking. For 19 years I have been
driving toward reason—or into
the sinews of city: the pile-up
on the interstate, the drums
of hydrochloric acid
near intersections, the suspicion.
Where does it end?
I’ve always understood
what can’t be said, but the man
who complained of kindness
had to apologize. There’s almost
no dialogue between life’s
various promises. Such endeavor,
all of these seasons.
Wind pulls on one wing
then a next—and a raptor flies
crooked through its mandolin language.
Suddenly everything verified:
cloud without end.
Lauren Camp is the author of five books, most recently Took House (Tupelo Press, 2020).
First published in The Poetry Mail. Included in Vox Populi by permission of the author.