“Sky Collapses on the Passamari” – By G. Karl Marcus

Sky Collapses on the Passamari

Winter sky drapes the land, like a canopy
dropped by unseen hands upon a cage.
Farm ground blurs between houses
at an imprecise place, over the creek, 
beyond my neighbors' spruce.  Past
what we can see spreads
the topography of an uncertain age.
Fence posts pitch and lose themselves
in fog, like stick men heading off
to evening chores, or the dutiful poor
marched off to kill the poor in forgettable wars.
What I took for granted and thought I knew
when sunbeams slanted through
transparent pain, seems now
untenable and untrue.  Still, rockslides
and dying forests loom, like deficits
we must assume in this obscuring air.
The looted vault gapes, a victim's mouth.
Herefords steaming under willows
birth their calves.  The little town rubs
its knees beside a flame and tunes
its set for a prompted reassurance.
I kick the empty streets in muffled gloom.
I bounce solid hopeful notes off walls
of unsold homes.  Kept birds balance
in dim rooms, each night, a new deception.
With sky this low, could it be more clear?
What we need to know we musn't hate or fear.
On the Passamari, the dog star fluxes, red
to green, whether occluded or seen.

-G. Karl Marcus



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