Today's poem is by Carl Phillips


Rest, now. All that ruggedness, blood-pain, and blindness-to-its-
own-illusions that, classically, the establishing of new frontiers
has always required—the work
                                                of empire: that was then.

In its wake, the fallen leaves rise and fall again, like the feet of
gods long ago deposed, shambling
                                                    nevertheless into their dusty,

once-fine arena. The gods look gently out on the staggered crowd.
And—very gently—the crowd, applauding, surprises even itself.

Copyright © 2007 Carl Phillips All rights reserved
from Cave Wall
Reprinted by Verse Daily® with permission

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