Blackbirdan online journal of literature and the artsSpring 2011 v10n1


I’d left Paris for the beaches
in Spain. I’d sold
my dead father’s farm
and, in shame,
bought it back again
at a great loss . . .  then
a plough found
a shelf of bismuth
and I sold just the north pasture
for big serial profits
and I am ashamed again:
the huge white bones of my father’s
favorite cow exposed
one late September morning!

It’s always been potatoes and bread
or millions of francs on speculation.
I am not stupid. I’m not dead.
But the bones of an old cow assemble
repeatedly now in a dream
where my naked lame father
sits in a tub of boiling milk
and screams at me
first my name and then his name
which is the same

name. The crimes of the verb to be
pushing a hard rain in general
across the city and its suburbs. . . .  end