Joshua Marie Wilkinson

A Song Called Forgetting

It’s alive now in you dreaming it
forgetting it, calling
it back out like so many lost dogs.
& the fight?
You know we lost it.
But how lost the war?
Through a simple
uninspired miscalculation
of the enemy’s culture.
You mean motives?
No. We mean flora.
Now, who is that in the river?
All my dead friends waiting
for the moon to get on its hoist.
What are their names?
The electricians of sleep,
the humiliated
the escutcheoned
the trussed-till-marked
the partly-roofed
the muddied collective
& my brothers & your brothers also & yours
& their dogs
in the white field of black manure to
a tentacular sky getting its yellow dust over
our so-called fortress.
Getting it onto your necks?
But yes.
& getting into your scalps?
Why yes.
You thought your soul had careened crooked?
Was it that you thought it could be so?
That the noise trailed off
so this must mark the ending—
From the messenger girl’s lost routes
to her passage out through the wooden
woods, the stenographer’s
child translator to the plastic owl on call
to the legendary child thieves, thieving.
& did the crumbs show the courier
where went a friend?
Well, the lightning is open in the ground.
The ground’s song can refract the circus of your blood
& you can burn just about anything with
neglect & an ignorance of a few basic principles.

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