V  P  R

Contemporary Poetry and Poetics



KANSAS, 1954


The corner of the farmhouse, worn by wind
that has warmed fields for centuries, is bent
and sullied to the color clouds will carry

in April.  Spades and rusted buckets lean
against a toppled silo, rows of wheat—
still green like lawns—converge, a vortex

of earth that's bent, retrieved by pausing light.
A boy is standing, six or seven, hands
in overalls and hair shaved army thin.

His teeth are white as Sunday shoes,
clean arms not yet tanned by earth or grease.
His glance, below center, turns away from sun

towards ground as if the day's not possible;
that on some lost acre, black and white
photo in grandma's album, he's become

the lines of fields, the sway of thinning wheat,
the passing shadow, brief and cloudless night.

© by Benjamin Vogt


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