Commonwealth

By | 1 July 2006

Not that I lied, or wasn't myself –
I don't know myself enough to tell –
but tried to do things with words,

alter events – like the hero
at the plane crash
who drags the pilot from the agitated fuel,

only to later confess
he wasn't even there,
or was – was there,

a lonely bystander in the field.
So too, I've put on poetry airs,
commander's wings.

I'd regret this more, send you a letter
to apologize, but no longer trust
what I might say in writing –

might end up singing the praises of
how everything which forms a meaning
does so as, like water in a flood, it finds its flow

in the force of its own going to meet the unknown
downstream. I'm not the conductor of stars,
can't make the sun desist from pestering

those who want more downtime in darkness;
I've watched the day end, outside,
glowing at the edges as the world goes

into a different mode, and cried,
for the way the air looked, or felt; but also
drawn comfort as smoke rises

from lawns where burning leaves,
as in a poem by Binyon or Burnside,
gather the visible surge that provides.

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