Michael Carlson

Bee sounds manipulated by fern shadow

will articulate our final loss

in a song about winter and kites.

There will be no breezes.

What look like cave drawings

on the walls of our mother’s womb

will be discovered by airport security

as we try to escape America.


If there is some play of leaves

against a cloudy background, or if

there’s wind, its width will animate

the stars and torn and towel-like

set Orion’s belt to snapping.

The lost paw of the delirious hound

will bob in a pond water

flustered by bee breath and thunder.


Men will curl and fleck themselves

against the bones of sacred owls,

and other men, who watch them,

speak against idea, against the thought

of wings and who, if anyone,

invented them. Later at the courthouse,

sunrise like a box of blood. The light

acquitting one and killing others.