Today's poem is by Darren Morris

The Cows

The ferry boat capsized, the cattle starved in the snow, and the televangelist smirked        like the President,
predicting calamity, many killings, all at once.
He thought it would be a meteor, but sometimes he missed.
            Humanity shook. I would have shaken, but I was with the cattle.
For I had become like them, those that I saw as a boy, taking their sweet ass time.
My life is passing by, I remember thinking, and they are taking their sweet ass time.
I thought, there must be something to this: me standing there, as a boy, with nothing        better to do, standing there
at the base of a hill, watching them,
as precisely as I see them now, loafing, lowing, lifting their lips and snubbing
            prairie grass, not starving these, but fat, lazing up the small hill,
and as they rose the sky darkened. When they reached the top, they stood there        looking at all corners of the earth. It
rained. And the rain released
the last of the summer sloes from the blackthorn bush and it drifted upward
            like a prayer from the drowning. It was such sweetness, such inexorable sweetness. The beast in its field.
The rain overhead. Such that when it rains, even now,
            it must mean somewhere the cattle have reached the top. And to think of them,
feeding no one else, it seemed right to me, that they might die in the soft snow, that        wild farm boys might
throw bales from helicopters but would not save them
for the slaughterhouse. Yet, I hope they do. One minute more is all they need.
            Just one day to walk up that hill. For when the giant planet-killing meteor
smashes the earth, I will have it in me. It will be the first thing that peoples the missing,        that rivers the next sky.
Only the cows will be the same.        And the rain.

Copyright © 2007 Darren Morris All rights reserved
from Diner
Reprinted by Verse Daily® with permission

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