Today's poem is by Kathleen Lynch


What if the earth like any body
    has a mouth and must be fed
and it shoves its breath
    in a fierce and shocking way
to knock the small meatlings
    to their knees, to bring them
that much closer to tongue,
    to swallow. And clouds

are its furled brows ragged
    with the weight of tears
for it would be a beast of sorrow
    too, the way it is for us,
with our terrible consciousness
    with death the crux of hunger
with death the only way
    to tear life out of air and into
the wet furnace of fullness.

    A mountain splits, a mountain
trembles under the weight of satiation
    gives itself back to liquid, its mouth
full of houses, cars, little bodies
    like seeds in the teeth.

How can we not go into the field
    or to the smacking lip of the sea
go every night and every day and fling
    our thousand bright knives of prayer
into the air, try to catch each one
    before it hits the ground.

Copyright © 2006 Kathleen Lynch All rights reserved
from Carquinez Poetry Review
Reprinted by Verse Daily® with permission

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