Anything That Can Be Misread

Let us explain the future of failure. Soaked in my mouth, like reading a novel backward, driving in the wrong lane with one’s eyes closed, the way we did when we were young and stupid and nearing dead, that ragged boundary at the margin of life’s page, like outside of town the unwritten industrial dumping yard where that man was crushed, just listen like a dead cricket. The rain repairs the cornfield row, I disappear the way smoke disperses, and what I am is the name for the wind, scything a slow-waving field of wheat, like water, I am afraid of my own hands. Acre by acre, this autobiography to grieve long before dying, as each season brings its death, outweigh unthinkable cornstalks shaggy wild grasses dun-colored stalks, burrs and dandelion seeds, far from any city even in winter, through the briars following the small tracks like quotation marks in the mud you follow until you know what aloneness is, to stumble through the door you’ve opened in the air. And embrace what is hidden like under the pond, frogs and salamanders and minnows, deer trampling the tall grass, through the branches the double moons of the doves cooing to the raccoons and opossums, egrets, coyote and coy dogs killing chickens, the outline of Canadian geese high up in the windows of the sky, blossoms like commas, the hawk’s meadow and emerge the monarch from its cocoon, the veil of want—

Front page image by jfolsom.

# # #