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After Reading the Wild Iris
—for Louise Glück, former poet laureate of the United States
by Marcel Aime Duclos

you use ordinary language
to tell us that life
is what it is

spruce and maples
snaring the winds
in the late afternoon
this side of the mountain

three reservation rescues
howling at distant moans
the neighbor soothing his cows
at milking time

Your father was the one
who helped invent the X-Acto Knife
that paid for piano lessons
while you danced thinner at the keys

Your muse saw to it
that you live to write
that you step away
from Lent and into Easter

(We all hear ourselves say
I can't go on no more)

Louise        dear poet laureate
you shout it in your verse
you tell us        Go ahead
Say what you are thinking        now

This morning        magpies harvest
winter twigs        and
mourning doves court
beneath the spruce

Last night        the motion camera
greets a fat raccoon
his spirit captured
then released

Louise        you tend your gardens
wait for the hidden growth
wade through the silent seasons
to net cascades of thought

Like you        dear Louise         I
speak because I'm shattered
Like you        I wait to read the story
the one we're writing now


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