Saturday, January 21, 2006

Lonely Battlefield

On this lonely battle field
I think of home

The roses by the front gate
which prick the visitor
The deep well, from which we have
drawn our cool water
The worn path to and from
the brown barn, where the cows stand nodding after milk time
The apple tree in the side yard,
and eating the small green bellyaches
my tree in one arm
my friend in the other,
spitting forbidden snuff
to the bee sting on my shoulder
The rasp of the chickens scratching
the hard pan under the eave of the house
The mew of the yellow cat
and her inches long kits
The gobble of old Tom
too tough a bird for a Thanksgiving meal

I think of home, the careless days,
the wicked nights,
the domestic skirmishes ending in door slams and
new day mornings, hugs and a cup of coffee,
cigarette breath,
and a kiss on my neck

I think of home
I hold these jewels of memory
as my sacred sacraments
eating and drinking them
in Great Thanksgiving,
because they are life giving to me

a way to transcend
this lonely battlefield

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