Willow River twilight


Civilization is a natural good.
Valleys are honeycombed
with anthills – tombed
with moral titans (Lincoln would

live up to his Memorial).
Government’s innate,
then – our pleasant fate
to be so compagnevole,

says Alighieri (after Harry
Woodpecker).  D.C.
marbled with majesty
will have a double Jubilee

this year – May 29th (the K
of Camelot’s birthday);
crowds cry hurray
up to the pint of vanishing

& glory glory hallelujah.
I love my country too.
But pride, you know,
leads oft to suicide – King Saul,

alas, fell on his sword, & Henry’s
Clover (sad antithesis
of photosynthesis) was
mortised into concave penury

(her veil of Isis hoovered out
of Iowa).  Her star
twirls like Ishtar
above a Willow River twilight


where gold prairie meets the far
horizon (at the green
mountain, where shriven
penitents climb to the door).

Pride be the world’s blockade.
Banners of orange black
& green (by Jasper Jack)
are complementary, not made

for nought.  Pete? Smoky Pete’s
still lively, though John’s
jotting paper crayons
with encaustic slivers now.  Wheat’s

blonde for Brother Jim’s Great
Purple Hairstreak – what
a butterfly!  Yet
there’s no sketchy moral shortcut

to self-centered celebrations
for a nation, in this world
of woolly worms curled
into cottonwood canyon-

cocoons.  No idle soul-solace
– an oxymoron in
the China cookie tin.
True penitence proceeds apace,

slowly, like Frank’s old shaky mule
inching to San Francisco.
Sorrow made your child go
sailing.  Grief tacks up another Yule.


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