the language of grief
is not exclusively human.
A wolf carries off our goose
by his gaunt neck in the night.
His partner wanders the perimeter
of our fields for six days
until her honking grows hoarse.
But it is the human:
so much of what we are
is what arrests us. Sudden rain.
The smell of burnt leaves
billowing from the underbrush.
A splinter from the porch
you spent months building with Dad.
Your hand tracing the same stain
on his coffin lid. Years get carried off
as you learn new words
which permit you to see
then prevent you from unseeing
your self, what the burning leaves.

Glenn Stowell
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