Something Like Belief

 

I call you with black doves, but no rain comes.

My voice is brittle as a bare tree against the sun.

 

When you sent the ark sailing over mountains,

the waters were heavens to the drowned below.

 

You may find me wicked yet.

You may find me any minute.

 

I see your face at night on the ceiling:

fluorescent halo left by a lamp extinguished.

 

The animal in my chest lopes through dry grasses.

It is neither fowl nor cattle nor creeping thing.

 

I wouldn't call it clean.

Even you regret, regretted our making.

 

Your shadow leaves a trench in the pavement,

and no one listens when I speak your name.

 

Listen. At last,

the horses gallop on the dappled roof.

 

My hand in yours—blue flame.

How easy to recoil.

 

I remain, and their hoof-falls fill my skull.

They are proof, or a cold front passing through.

 

A day gone, and a day coming, knocking.

Shall I let the vagrant in and feed him?

 

I have nothing to give. I give him the horses:

dripping manes, cool muzzles,

 

and the gallons of air in each lung.

 

 

 

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