Gone Poet

Not so long ago, epidemiologists said of a new deadly virus, “not if, but when.” Now the answer is “now.” I read all the news all day long, and it seems there is nothing left to say. Then today a friend wrote me with a “chain mail” poetry letter. So I sent a poem to a stranger, one of my favorite Robert Creeley poems, I Know a Man.

So there are words after all. I will start by digging up some poems I wrote half a lifetime ago. And maybe I will start writing some new ones.

Cactus Leaves

I’m getting
used to the idea
of death
he said to her
while she lay
sucking cactus
leaves, occasionally
sitting upright
to pull a thorn
from her teeth,
and  later, when
the glare gave
way, they made
love in the sand
seeking redemption
then talked
smoking about the
lack of things
to dwell on ever
since abandoning
the Cutlass on the
side of I-91
having assumed
it wasn’t carrying
them anywhere
anyhow,
but still neither
of them mentioned
their visions:
the well and the
swelling tide and
drowning

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