Aug 312011
 

At an unsteering speed of stoppage,
Detourned from straight tracks and wages
Into a listless field gone over 
Mostly to pale thick-blossomed clover,
A boxcar keeps still its steel rails
Going both ends nowhere in parallel.
At the blackness of the door
A bandit gathers gold once more,
Pulling yellow raspberries
From some single spray above the weeds,
Reaching the rarewire richness
With nimble hands and quickness,
Palming sunset tears from thorns;
The racoon drinks them one by one.
Nothing comes to the rusted hitch
Clawing air above a gopher ditch,
No iron hand arrives to steer
And with knuckled coupling make a pair,
To clasp its open mate from the clearing
Into a sky of tear-streaked stars
Where time would hoist a husky boxcar
From its slatted stall and decay
To paradise, all the way.

Yet in the eye of a ruffed robin,
On her hopeful nestful throned within
Where the red roof caves in
From leakage and mineral rain,
Glints a hint of levitation--
In her high eye alone it seems
A flying boxcar bursts with wings
Like eyelashes; below it, everything
Lies amiably disordered,
Earthbound and solemnly sordid,
While heavenly visitors to her nest
Feed her safe chicks, and she rests.
So much of vision came to eye, and awed.
A unpersuaded caw cawed
From the litter of the field
The hunching crow refused to yield,
A black bold spot that picked for trash
In weeds gone bright to whiteness.
Now only time, for what it's worth
Flying still on its changeful path,
Turns the structure in its soft clutch
Like a moody sleeper back to earth.

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