Though the mailman bash our mailbox
with his flute, or children fix
their feet within the filthy feathers
of a broken owl, our nation
must sometime relinquish its echo,
and not to a photograph
of President Haze, or dead words cut
in a tub of stolen moccasins.
There is more to the fire, to be said
of the fire, than a reporter
can thumb in the delicate ash. If we follow
the flame width, we measure in error.
Better the leaf smoke absorbed
in blue sweater, the deer in the lake
that we fear causes cancer,
trees in a faraway weather.
All news is opinion except poetry,
and most poetry, too floppy
to read on the train. The fat facts
withheld from the wind like lead
in a typesetter’s lung. Yet strawberries
startle us, seeds cupped in skin. We study
the pores of our nose seventh-heartedly,
confusing the moon with a rooster.