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.