Eleven Miles


I need to write the blue of chicory against
the yellow spikes of great mullein
the blush of bergamot beneath heavy umbels
of elderberry bordering the soybeans.

I need to breathe again air redolent with roses
from Ecuadorian fincas,  the heavy wetness
of afternoon rains swirled from the craters of
Veracruz, borne on the wind to Kansas

field where yesterday’s rain soaked wheat
is today’s straw. Along the Bethel-Church road
this  juxtapositioning of where I am and where
I have been combines into the shape of a white

calf stranded outside the pasture fence
but whose mother already lumbers westward;
a knowing between us that Eben Alexander’s
all will be well applies to gravel roads twisting
between green headed coneflowers and dust,
the silent aching of tiny body wanting the warm teat.

I need to wear the Queen Anne’s  Lace, and race
among the feathery heads to find the dotted pink eyes,
rare among the black. I frame the flight of indigo
bunting across my path only to mourn the crush

of turtle and squirrel.  I bow back to the wind
bent stems and feel this soaring of my spirit
that drives the wanting to know, to be intimate
with the yellow sweet clover, the hot pink spikes

of loosestrife along the southbound tracks
of the B & N.  I eat air but am never sated.
Overwhelmed, I name them, like the child
calling to playground friends who never turn
their heads:  stay I shout although I make no
sound, stacking memories like logs against
an endless winter of barren desperation.
 
By Pat Anthony

 


To read more of Pat Anthony’s poems please visit middlecreekcurrents.