Ed Jay (AKA/Ed Parris) holds an MFA in poetry from Eastern Washington University. His work has appeared in Poetry, New York Quarterly, Hawaii Review, Colorado Review, Blueline, and many other literary magazines. His website is www.edjaymfa.com.
recedes to this dark shape?
Chicago’s lake shore museum
Where naked wax homo-erecti
kneel over plastic fire,
dinosaurs remembered in stone.
But take mountains,
and put modern insurance man
(homo-and-auto) between mountains
where water tumbles over rock
streaming to tall grass meadows—
Twigsnap / parting brush: an elk
drinks there. In the weight
of his antlers, the family tree,
cervus canadensis, comes down
to Him to wake man from His
nightmare, move gently
through tall grass, brush into stone,
and when the last shuttle lights
cross the dark sky, even Chicago
is lost to the memory of stone.
that breed of folk
who see art without labor
and victory without battle,
who suckle on your success
and carve failure into your skin.
When all love, labor and art are done,
they will stand at the well of your soul
praying for clean water
with no ladles of their own.
Lay me down
naked beneath young cedar. Let
me decompose to food for the trees,
the carbon they need to exhale
clean air. Let me be
resurrected molecule by molecule,
released by old cedar to the sky,
to float gently back to the universe
of stars where all life begins, loved
in those divine mother arms.