The Scarecrow’s Apprentice
I’m a riddle in eleven syllables.
I’m a lover with seven laughs, each hoarser
than the last. I’m a pun, a jokester, my kid
self pulling my leg—stretching denim and time
to a vanishing point on the horizon
of a straw-filled plane. I’m gravity. I play
favorites. On Einstein’s Cross, I’ll bend light just
enough to catch your eye. If you look closely
(you won’t), I can’t be what you want me to be:
the coarse burlap of space starlit just enough
to illuminate worn threads that need patching.
It doesn’t take your living eyes to see I’m
not made for such sublime hanging. Of nimbus
and thorn, I am divine. Crows circle through my
parts that are sky rejoicing in my beauty
as fields go barren and drift under washed out
clouds. Please forgive me for pretending my hands
don’t have previous lives. I will forgive you
for asking why I hang here, why I struggle
to be less beautiful than I am. I won’t
succumb to grace to make my life easier.
I won’t fail my only purpose for being.
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