Monday, November 7, 2022

Heart Broke Anyway

tell me about the fear

What was ordinary terrified me. I understood early that evil was banal. It didn't have enemies, only accomplices. The calf died because my father was indifferent to its survival. Nobody taught him to notice, much less fix, this incapacity for love. I was four when the calf escaped into the forest. Why didn't we look for it? What prayer to what god brought it back the next day trembling with fever? Who decided brandy was the medicine? I watched everything from an assigned distance until it was time to dig the grave and then I learned what my father couldn't face. How bad does it have to get for a man to forget he has a son? I dreamed of a world that existed beyond the reach of this one, a world where nothing died or ran away. Those dreams buffered me against losses that were otherwise unmanageable but my heart broke anyway. Here I am, half a century later, wondering how to end this poem. Thinking it matters. Missing what does.

october sky
kneeling at graves
nobody visits

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