Thursday, January 23, 2014

23 January 2014

Chris Tanseer

Appalachian Homecoming

A dinner bell reverberates through the valley,
Appalachian slow-going blues, the leaves dance shadows
                                      on the forest floor
And through my thoughts

As if each were inseparable from the other.
I’m at it again, rationing out my ration to the cedars and loons.
Wanderlust in the loose veil of sundown.

Returning to you seems easy
                                      outside the thing, like watching
An osprey above the tree line swoop low, spear the water
And talon a trout. I’ve known men who have lived

In the gaps of syllables, wed
The evenings outside the lit window of a former lover — intimate now
With a whiff from the bedroom fan, or the familiar voice

Of a distant body, a syllable astray. Syllable, from
The Greek syl-, “together with,” and lab-, “to take.”
Miles are the easiest distance to traverse.

Odysseus reached Penelope
In just ten years. Which is why, after
Nobody escaped from Polyphemus and, when

Nobody revealed his name, it lived to haunt
                                      the blind hermit. Syllables astray.
Words lack alone. I’ve known men who’ve waited lifetimes
In the next room.

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