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Today's poem is by Dorianne Laux

Fog

The first of us must have looked up at the night agog,
so many stars, so much light falling down, the bugs
back then big as fists, so many rivers and ponds clogged
with fish we skewered them on sticks, made a fire, bred dogs
from wolves to keep us warm, safe, pines wrapped in fog
or morning mist, the sheep braying beside us, groggy,
their bellies filled with wet grass, the feral pigs become hogs
in a pen, cloven hooves slathered in mud. We built jagged
fences to keep what we didnít want out, what we did, in, logs
were dragged through a field by horses, a house rose, mugs
placed on a shelf, a table set with plates. Then the nagging
began: Who left the feedbag in the rain? Who forgot to plug
the hole with a rag? The children grew, little quagmires
we sank into. We fed them, scrubbed them, raised them, rang
a bell for supper, school, for the one who died, the soggy
earth taking her back, the others running unaware, tagging
each other in the dusk, calling out numbers. But still the vague
unrest in the dark looking up at the moon, the old dog wagging
his flea-laden tail, barking for no reason they could tell, zagging
off like an uncle, drunk on busthead whiskey, back into the trees.



Copyright © 2011 Dorianne Laux All rights reserved
from Burnside Review
Reprinted by Verse Daily® with permission

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