I Drive Home At Dusk In February
The first time the fields died,
I was thirty, visiting my hometown
when my brother drove me
through the new houses in the bottomland
drained of its swamp, even the creek
where we used to stand the horses to cool their fetlocks
The first time a piece of land I loved was ruined,
I wept as if someone I were close to had died.
It seems silly now, childish, the way
a girl breaks down and cries at a single harsh word
or a boy weeps the first time he loses his heart forever.
The same children weep more quietly
through their recitation of the Kaddish
at their father’s funeral
while the congregation stands with them
and the rain falls, pouring down
father by father.
(The Hong Kong Review, Vol. II, No. 1)