Today's poem is by Oni Buchanan

The Sun Turns Like a Pinwheel

A raft stretches behind our mother
and we are on it, tethered to her strokes.

The sun turns like a pinwheel.
We saw it from our network

like a curving, fluctuating plane
of many dots. We spread out

like a blanket to keep the nightmares
unfiltered into air. Brutal

consolations. A uniform scathing;
some sizzle to leave behind

the body to its next breath-inhabitant
(a silver pass, invisible by day)—- To plant

the vacant marrow, a raft.
We blister, we agonize in time,

a metrical occasion of days.
Night provides the bar line, the pause

between movements. Watery boulevard
of interference, indifference, a

no-man's land—char
across the landscape—

The sun turns like a pinwheel.
We gather inside it with our

armored shoulders all together,
clustered in the center. We are on

its platform. We are on the raft,
dragged along behind. We will be raised

toward it. Sometimes we grip
as hard as we can—the wind

would shake us from our
shimmering mission to receive

and to deflect again the scalding rays,
for its luminance makes

our luminance shine—
Our huddled bodies make a

compound eye—
A jeweled hint of emerald warning,

a scabbard leading to a dagger.
The sun turns like a pinwheel. It counts

its radiant, radioactive petals, ending always
in "love," an odd number—

Copyright © 2012 Oni Buchanan All rights reserved
from Must a Violence
University of Iowa Press
Reprinted by Verse Daily® with permission

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