Monday, November 17, 2014

Richard Wright

Richard Wright [symphonyspace]

from Richard Wright's Haiku: This Other World, "scarecrow" haiku:

“Oh, Mr. Scarecrow,
Stop waving your arms about
Like a foreigner!”

From the scarecrow’s sleeve
A tiny green leaf unfolds
On an oaken arm.

Late one winter night
I saw a skinny scarecrow
Gobbling slabs of meat.

The scarecrow’s old hat
Was flung by the winter wind
Into a graveyard.

Little boys tossing
Stones at a guilty scarecrow
In a snowy field.

Even the sparrows
Are attempting to thaw out
The frozen scarecrow.

When I turn about,
My shadow lies alongside
That of a scarecrow.

“Let’s make a scarecrow!”
But after we had made it,
Our field grew smaller.

Bedraggled scarecrow,
What a time you must have had
In last night’s rainstorm!

Scarecrow, who starved you,
Set you in that icy wind,
And then forgot you?

Don’t they make you sad,
Those wild geese winging southward,
O lonely scarecrow?

It is so hot that
The scarecrow has taken off
All his underwear!

Cut by the tip of the hoe,
The scarecrow shudders.

When the horse whinnies,
The scarecrow waves both his arms,
Asking for silence.

A skinny scarecrow
And its skinnier shadow
Fleeing a cold moon.

As my delegate,
The scarecrow looks pensively
Into spring moonlight.

A darting sparrow
Startles a skinny scarecrow
Back to watchfulness.

His task completed,
The scarecrow watches the truck
Leave loaded with corn.

The scarecrow’s big sleeves
Advertising in the sun:
Huge, red tomatoes!

On a scarecrow’s head
A sparrow braces itself
Against the spring wind.

He hesitated
Before hanging up his coat
On the scarecrow’s arm.

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