As the light goes, go.
Be the rustling in the grass, the fall from
convention's good graces: learn, or someone
will have you filing files or writing writs,
With the morning's bird calls comes a woman's sobbing
and I'm left to eavesdrop, to reconcile sympathy with
helplessness and speculate on first causes. My guess:
They give her lunch, prick her finger for sugar.
Her stories are usually about being unlucky:
a young soldier is given away by the steam
from his own urine and so on and so forth.
We do see you, you know,
on the other side of the screen,
always in the fourth row
She praises his gift of a tin cat, japanned
and bejeweled and black like her cat at home;
and all the while nurses, unarmed and helpless,
It passes the childhoods of people
it doesn't know, meeting aunts
with hennish stop-and-go eyes
and uncles with tiny square teeth.