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Monday, March 19, 2007


by David Chorlton

A tree fell while you were sleeping
and it was the last of its kind
in the last plot in which
such a tree can grow. Some birds flew away from it
without knowing where to land
and have not been seen
since the sun cast the tree’s last shadow
like an arm reaching
to grip the earth. And unbeknownst to you
in the night, warships
gathered at the coast of a country
regarded as an ally yesterday and an enemy
today as the first attack begins
in the name of a cause
which seems not to concern you and even
if it did you have been forbidden to object
due to a law that passed at midnight
when you thought you were dreaming.
While you were sleeping
your house was condemned, your assets
were seized, and your clothes were taken away
as evidence of a crime
yet to be identified. The forecast for today
is cool at first, then warmer. No measurable wind.
Good morning.

David Chorlton plans to take poetry to local nature festivals this springtime and hopes to find a way to an audience unused to poetry but aware of the beauty in wildlife. He goes into the Arizona landscape to be refreshed after too much exposure to bad news in the city and teaches a weekly writing class for seniors of all ages in Scottsdale.