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Monday, November 29, 2021


by Alejandro Escudé

For Robert Bly (1926-2021)

When you passed, I entered the forest and walked further than 
I have ever walked. Beyond the shaded path, I found you in the sun.

You sang to me about the old trains that wait in the falling snow.
I took a train just like the one you rode on. There were stars,

And castles erected for me, in the valley below the dictator’s citadel.
And there, we danced dressed up as knights, like so many Don Quixotes.

No one ever came to plow us into the ground with spears as sharp as 
Inadequacy. Afterward, some drove back to the Christian hospital,

Others wept in their anxious offices. Some made it back to their home,
Where their dogs waited dutifully to be walked for a short time.

But I want to thank you for your stories. The pity and confidence,
The marginalia of dragons, and the wise women who danced

In your honor, beneath the flaming cables of industry. Poet king,
I am not going back to the misery factory, where I turned

The levers like vipers, each bite a bite for eternity. I am here for you.
You branded me with the confidence of the son. I see bonfires

Flickering beyond the forest, they have welcomed me for centuries.
They tell me, the men living there, “We see you. And we see your love.”

Alejandro Escudé published his first full-length collection of poems My Earthbound Eye in September 2013. He holds a master’s degree in creative writing from UC Davis and teaches high school English. Originally from Argentina, Alejandro lives in Los Angeles with his wife and two children.