As If From Letters Of Surveyor Samuel Maclay Poem by Brian Teare

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Brian Teare

Athens, Georgia

As If From Letters Of Surveyor Samuel Maclay

sent for you last week dogwoods
a swansong white flowers
on whitewater weather continues
cloudy but little rain intelligence
with its attendant circumstances
embarrasses me much no word
from something to do patience
exhausted dear shaved myself
and then returned the word
pluvial the maple a map
of the river's tributaries rinsed
glistening province of inquiry
my black nets set past cattails
dredge drawn up leaves
alluvium grasp and clatter
of crawfish all hunger
could gather this morning I saw
a deer fording the river
to a small island I felt unable to work
full proof having nothing
the mind destroys everything careful
the world is
the river brims first the few
roads go
under but this is a letter weather
the shine of water on nouns

let it be remembered
I made a plum pudding
in a bag as fine a one as I ever ate
this with a dish of tea
concluded the month of May obliged
to spend the morning baking
bread things I admire their industry
water folds the arms
of a host of brown coats shine worn
whitely into each elbow
I write I fancy I hear canoe poles
returning this not only keeps me
uneasy for the moment but in pain
in consequence as I am in want
of word I imagine your letter corn
stubble troubling the flood fields
no geese riding the river's stir
and fervor what you sweep from
the porch pine needles berry
stains click of seed husks things
birds leave I leave you too
and send what facts I can sunken road
refracted bent branch made heavy
with wet black bark a clot of leaves flood
plain and waterline my loneliness
a season when the bank's given the river
rising everything it had here I am
in country unsettled without either
canoe or horse a field remarkable
for the great number of bones found
in it I write to report
they all appear in good humor

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Brian Teare

Athens, Georgia
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