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Grey Sparrow Journal

Issue 30, July 31, 2017
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Driving to Easter

 

 

   

Dusk.  The almost-full moon, large with
horizon, floats between Equinox and Easter.
We climbed the hill, giddy with springtime at dawn.

        *

I remember roads in southern Sweden,
the snow falling in June as I stood
with my thumb out beside the rocky pasture.

        *

Why is it that every time I try
to focus my binoculars on the man
in the moon, the face disappears?

        *

The young guy driving the junker with its trunk
roped shut, the girl riding beside him
they could be us thirty years ago.

        *

The old combine, like a mastodon
frozen in mid-charge, still rusts in the field,
but Charlie, who painted its portrait, is gone.

        *

The hawk falls asleep on a branch.
The woods begin to fill with small sounds,
all the tiny lives spared by darkness.
                                            

                    ―Thomas R. Smith

 

 

 

Spring Song

 

 

When the river, laughing pearl-white, tumbles down the stairs of the rapids without

       breaking its bones,

when earth waking from its dream plays a terrifying kettle drum solo,

when the green saltshaker of spring sprinkles the trees,

when our great-great grandparents rise from their sleep to stand arms around each

       other in the open doorway,

when the towns revert to their original streets,

when none of the birds’ eggs have yet cracked,

when the river carries arks of ice, barns of ice, mountain ranges of ice,

when the river becomes a railroad for the Great Northern freight-train of ice,

then something in me leaps from bed to look out

and see my life rushing free between its shores,

nothing stuck in my rapids,

nothing hung up on my falls,

nothing muting the clear-running music

I hear splash and foam.


              ―Thomas R. Smith