Michael Pruchnicki


GOING HOME ON THE NORTHERN PACIFIC


The way home for me was eastbound
on the Northern Pacific from California
riding coach (pillow furnished for a fee)
and reading paperback books -

everything from Robinson Jeffers
'...stones have stood for a thousand years,
and pained thoughts found the honey
of peace in old poems.'

to Denise Levertov's Illustrious Ancestors
'...poems direct as what the birds said,
hard as a floor, sound as a bench,
mysterious as the silence when the tailor
would pause with his needle in the air.'

even the obscure Ray Durem
'...I cannot find those mild and gracious words
to clothe the carnage.'

I got off when the train reached Chicago
a soldier home from the war

Submitted: Tuesday, April 08, 2008
Edited: Wednesday, June 18, 2008

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