Poetry by Jael
by jael bietsch

This distance I know from my markers.
This my meaning, peace
comes aching, a pain
I know below my left breast,
not digging deep a course to my fingertips.
(That is not peace.)

This peace I know from skyless afternoons.
Grey-haze over turned stubble fields,
blue-dusted with snow,
worn-wood fences, worn-wood
barns with rusted tin roofs,
the still windmill and hawk
hanging over his perch, windless
that haze, I know it
carries the sea-salt off my longings.

This pain I know from my distance.
To stop still beside windmill
and haze, for I know
corn-stubble would be ungiving
under my boots, soil hard-frozen,
snow grey with road dust,
Finger-chilled with an ache
from deeper places (I don't go),
I would taste only ash.

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    © 1995 Jael Bietsch

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    March 8, 2000