1996 Dave Awl
What She Said To The Papers
Somewhere in India an elephant
is flapping its ears, a warning,
a come-no-closer, as the lemon-pepper 
noodles boil on the stove and an
inscrutable wind shakes the leaves
outside my window. Sky darkens,
like a word said in bitter condemnation.
Everywhere, old wood is splintering and
cracking, groans of protest and snaps of an ill
foreboding. A swarm of baby roaches
runs in deranged circles as if that
might help.
But it can't, it won't, nothing will,
the heavy tread is falling and the air
grows brittle and the black fountain
erupts in dreams, impossible malevolence
sky-high and breathtaking,
worse than the devil and true as rock,
and we will sleep in a snow of ash.
I have poems to write before we do,
and peppermint tea and a letter to read,
a dozen more shaves and a day by the
river, but it won't help, it can't,
this was planned longer ago
than you can imagine, our futures sold
for a brass coin in a clay cup and these
dreams of silence, they grow louder the more
you listen.