Second Return
Let the cerement of light, the silent snow
covering the bells frozen in the towers, speak
a country of tired bays, where rain hesitates
to break the seamless yellow of toil; let this
coffin-shaped light balance on the negative
compass, the shock and stun, the heart’s
sudden brace for a jealous thunder, childhood’s
hands clapping in the assembly of absence,
rejoicing in the clarity of hunger and fired clay.
Let the hands be wings to lift out of water
a rippled name—jangle of bells—left untended
like a wheat field, swath of light, violet
stains, the night someone wiped their hands
on. Let the stray goat be recalled, and the 
mango tree violated for its bastard fruit, recall
the army of cane flags that marched through 
dreams, saluted by silver-edge cutlasses
at morning. O envy of sea, binding and separating 
islands, husk envy at every accent’s core, 
their fiber glint after rum flasks break their seals 
and rivers let down their hair between shallow gullies.
Let not the blank of winter forget the buried glass; 
let it pull blood out of any pilgrim who goes there 
and marks a way back by the body’s scent 
and light, distended by a melting brook. 
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