Thursday, November 12, 2015

country music sutra

it becomes tiresome: all melodythe sparrow’s song with
no traffic roar behind it—sparrow in the hedge I never
see it emerge
                        & just last night I could see my future in
chill air outside the hospital walking through drizzle uphill
to the bus stop
                        you aren’t part of it in those cottonwood leaves
fallen yellow by the barbed wire fence in an Idaho
cemetery where we
                       could see our breath & smiled for a
photograph—today a drizzle falls while a pale yellow
sun tries to burn no
                       brighter than those leaves & as
damp in an eastern sky; when I walk out this morning on-
to the city’s pavement
                       I’ll put on that same jacket
for 5 miles looking for someone else who is likewise not
inhabiting that future—
                       that man smiling next to you in the
the country graveyard: myself & not, & when that
future opens its throat:
                       a sparrow in the hedge drowned in
the number 4 bus line’s rale & wheeze & cottonwoods
cast off yellow leaves in light
                       rain: this G chord arpeggiated to the
B string damped in faint air

Jack Hayes
© 2015


  1. Replies
    1. Thanks, Jason! I still mostly go by John. Jack dates way back as a family name, but I've published poetry, whether in magazine, book or online form under that name since the late 80s.


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