Today's poem is by Susanna Childress

Man as Walnut

Head thrown back, he cries, is not ashamed,

though his people are farmers and lawyers. He hollows

out the nadir for sounds: the spine’s delicate

nuggets, the tiny pear of green gall, a miserable wonder

locked in his body and sent to the throat, that petty thief

of the spirit hawking its calamities. He works

at making what noises he must, stays at it, drooping

like the sunflower heavy with kernels. Here

with the sheets pulled taut I have thought to gather

what falls, antediluvian as a psalm, but all that will emerge

true as the translucent paper halving a small meat

is this: were each of us to know this weeping

and let ourselves, what would not come

undone, whole, unhulled, from the sky?

Copyright © 2011 Susanna Childress All rights reserved
from Entering the House of Awe
New Issues Poetry & Prose
Reprinted by Verse Daily® with permission

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