Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, NEWS, by JAMES GALVIN

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Classic and Contemporary Poetry

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First Line: These afternoons seem to occur more
Last Line: Like a sudden flow of blood from the mouth
Subject(s): News

These afternoons seem to occur more
In geologic time than in one's life.
Under the blue fresh snowfall,
Sandstone outcrops generate heat.
I count fifteen kinds of tracks,
Like runes, and nothing living.

Drifted snow, an ethered gauze,
Muffles the land, creaks under my skis,
Animals sleep among the roots,
Without doors, without dreams.
Seven miles for a phone
And even the wires have gone under.

Another day knowing nothing more
Than when I last saw you,
That stainless-steel shadow
Vigilant over your bed.
It followed you down the hospital halls,
Arms hung with surgical fruit.

I slide down the last drift to the house,
Slap my skis together.
A small avalanche, shaped like a continent,
Drifts off the roof and falls into a heap,
And some chinking falls from the eaves.

We each inhabit our own
Small flesh, our tract.
Each tries to keep his own
Doors from creaking, like news,
As each night slams shut, and each dawn opens
Like a sudden flow of blood from the mouth.

Used with the permission of Copper Canyon Press, P.O. Box 271, Port Townsend, WA
98368-0271, www.cc.press.org

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