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Tuesday, October 25, 2005


by Barbara Schweitzer

The day glooms dark this afternoon
long before the appointed hour of dusk.
A fitful oak badgers the window
haunting the past like those pictures
of Munch’s scream. It’s a howling wind.

I’ve just returned from shopping
fighting to get the plastic bags
in the door before the huffs
make a brigade that discovers
flight in the modern elements
of carnage – I’ve heard new rocks
are germinating in earth from our
refuse, and lawn chairs as well.

I have tomatoes and cream cheese
and canola oil we’ve needed for a day.
We’re starving in abundance here,
our eyes profoundly impoverished
by TV images over which we can
only pour, corruption so deep
our hearts are forming new rocks too.

The weather has infected my mood.
Sunnier morning had me singing.
Now I can only remember rains.
Shattered things. Lives so different
from mine but made of the same
stuff. To see life as one whole thing
accepts poverty and ignorance and
only evolution to bring any peace.

Barbara Schweitzer is a poet and playwright living in northern RI. Her work has won numerous prizes including a merit fellowship from RI's NEA allotment. Her first volume of poetry, 33 1/3 (Little Pear Press) will be released in spring 2006.