This is the month trees crack
midnight bangs on your roof
with an icy hoof
Winter is just arrived
and already you’re running out the lies
that con you into believing this is your life.
Only November and all you have left
is air so cold and thick, stacking in deep valleys
you will carve stairs
and climb out over the mountains
when you know you must leave.
You know you must leave.
Abandon your neighbor. He has his own faith
that calls you stranger before his hearth.
Come dusk, he feeds his horses,
smashes ice out of their water trough,
sings a worksong to his fenced pasture–sound ricochets
like a gunshot and the blue distance shatters.
The horses flicker their ears. They heard
what you heard, make no mistake.
They bend their apostatical faces down,
knock on the ground, muzzle and trample
the splintering bale to nothing. They are already
white steam from their cloud red bodies
Nov. 30, 2013