Sunday, September 13, 2015

The Refugee

You ran through fields of sunflowers and corn

rustling  the dry stalks with nothing

but your light-footed haste. The last of your belongings

thrown near a startled flock of geese.


Now you lean against the green door of a rail car

waiting to board.  Razor wire scrawls its signature

along the border; and you reflect on those birds. Like you

they possess only the memory  of migration

and a shadow.  Yours outlines a slim woman with  her hair

loosely tied, a clump of tangled strands


that resembles  the roots you saw when pulling

a white flower from the soil in Syria. The plant

wasn't dying but  it seemed pointless to leave

beauty dwindling in a garden embalmed  with  heat

and ruin. You cut the stem and pressed the petals

between pages of your journal. The leather book

fallen to the  bottom of  the luggage  you abandoned .

Your poems written in graphite, and the pencil

cloaked in the lace hem of  a slip. Its gold wood  bearing

the bitten rhythm of  fear.


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