Triptych

Foreign, I listen--No, I hear
the news of friends now grown,
like oaks, heavy with age.
News from my mother
who walks down the stair.
In a cistern my voice
gurgles, Mother--
I care less for these
strangers
than for
the mistranslations
of a Slavic poet,
the micro-
scopic cairns
ants pass in their
deft maunderings
on the trail of some
rich scent--
or on their meanderings
home with the prey.

I swallow hard.
TV gurgles.
Operatic accordians.
Houndlessly.
Bamboo clatter.
An electric fan farts,
stops dead.

Dark, the sun sends light
ahead to announce its
arrival.  I see
my mother skipping
toward me
from a field in the east.
A girl in a red peasant dress.
A burnished lion gallops
westward, past us,
ignoring first her, then me.
I stand frozen
before our cottage,
waiting till it's safe
to wave and leap and call out.


2002 Jim McCurry.  All rights reserved. 

 

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