You’d like to let the landscape talk, you’d like
to say there’s nothing left to say, but you’re
as bound as anyone who wants to leave
a record, pile of leaves or ash that screams,
“I am alive!” So, Miaskovsky’s on
the playlist: string quartets you haven’t heard
before, a burnished sadness, throbbing core.
Mammoth spruce outside your window’s half
in sunlight, half in shadow: molten gold
poured ceaselessly on military camouflage.
Your dad fought in Korea. After Vietnam,
he’d seen enough: retired. You couldn’t pass
the eye exam to get you to West Point.
Dad’s dead now. Blurred wind glinting in the oak.