Unexpected Fall

Rose Lucas

 

Barn doors are latched against the snow

and a slash of red roof slants across winter’s pale, oncoming frame:

when a grouse,

flecked and surprisingly elegant

sails low through the yard,    hitting

doors with crunch of bone,

the rupturing sac –

so that an angularity of feathers slides

slow toward the still exposed gravel of the drive,

trailing bloodied tracks to answer

gravity’s dark urgings,

the density of this clotted earth;

 

even as the honeyed light of lamps

springs up in human windows –

the silken weave of feather and warm body,

the airiness of skeleton,  acuity of eye,

flight’s bold trajectory –

all fall askew,

broken and

cooling already as evening

floods the wide and darkening fields of death’s wilderness –

its blackening grasses,

its blank interruption.

 

Rose Lucas is a Melbourne poet, critic and academic. Her collection of poems, Even in the Dark, was published by University of West Australia Press, July 2013. She is currently teaching Poetry and Poetics at Victoria University.

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