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Among the Unawake poems from the Great Plains by Rodney Nelson

F e b r u a r i u s

After he had said and done
come back and left
they met
we must not forget
we have to write him down
the cowbell of the church of
the redeemed
not a
reply to the flat leaden winter morning but the
voice of it and they have to attend who want to
be looking chastened for him
are ready to wait out
another millennium
one hymn grants them hope
and when they emerge into a clear forenoon seems
to have come true
the very words in it
they must not think of any others or make
any up
the light
will go away again soon
they know to be true
we must repeat what he
said and did
or what the fathers wrote of it
a cloud has returned
every chimney in the town
a steeple to them and everyone is on
the way back to a private version of the holy
man and woman
we must not forget
we gotta hang onto this
a marriage
and earth
as he had not said or written or done
who had walked with him ordained it had to be
if only we can
two having met and married
hold on now for the bell’s next clack in winter as the
of their mating
goes on
in the animal day around
without them


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