Who Will Eat This?
This compost from which I came,
to which – like lines of poetry
that feed the culture fed by
water and plants, the winged and legged –
I too feed the earth and decompose,
break down, rot, fertilize, decay.
So much for the summer sun,
apples on trees, or the dew
hanging like crystals on leaves.
All things return to you –
not a thing will be spared:
not the oak, maple, and pine;
neither wren, robin, or crow;
not the fox and deer;
not this poem –
not even the woman I love.
Everything is forfeit to the damp
fungal mycelia of soil,
rich with earth-scent,
the voice of the dead still speaking.
The rain falls upon the detritus of
de-composed lines: once flesh and bone and singing,
drips from the branches and leaves –
a baptismal for the holy fruits to come,
spoken in the common tongue
of mushrooms and moss, sorrel and sprouts.
Even as the ink of this poem sinks into the page
the paper fades, dampens, decays –
What vegetables will it become?
Who will eat this? Who will drink the vitality of change?
Who will fruit, flower, and seed?
What use are poets in times of need?