The Deadly Awareness of Bones
Which one? Which one
are you? One of the living,
the few who see, who hear,
who feel the world living, breathing,
the laughing, sighing, crying and the raging
and the dying around them?
Are you one of those with no choice
but to watch it all?
Or are you dead –
dead like all the rest?
Do you know what you will see,
where it will all be if you look
out your window?
The Squirrel at home in that tree,
another, his brother, stirring
in the other. The light – liquid
gold fire dribbled in the dark
of early morning bark
rising high over ground bound Ivy
creeping along the edges
of your mud patch called yard.
The Thrushes – their cousin the Siskin
nesting therein. Do you see these things?
Do you see the world around you without
looking? Can you know where each is, can
you sense a difference in the day’s pattern
to know your environment is altered?
When you fly down the road at sixty
do you notice that new mailbox –
whether it sits on a post, pole, fence,
or a chain welded to a loop, a heart?
Do you know the sound of the Heron
coughing in the night? The difference
between the whisper of cat paws, finch feet,
and the wind in the blackberry bushes?
Have you heard the lonely midnight cry
of the wandering Goose, Owl, and Loon
while sitting on cold cement steps
contemplating the things you have lost,
the reasons for the losings?
Do you know the language of the wind,
or the dance of the fern – the way She trembles,
not shakes or quakes, but trembles
just before thoughts rain
from greyed skies?
Which are you? One
of the few who see, who hear,
who feel the world in its living,
breathing, laughing, sighing and crying
And raging and dying rhythms?
Are you one of those
with no choice
but to watch, doomed
to see it all?
Or are you dead?
like all the rest?