Michael McClintock


                                                     when you opened
                                                     my letter
                                                     were you surprised
                                                     my heart
                                                     fell out?

                                                     digging up roots
                                                     I find two
                                                     folded like hands,
                                                     deeper than the others,
                                                     and re-bury them

                                                     carrying the sun, the clouds,
                                                     the mountains easily --
                                                            a small stream
                                                            wandering unnamed
                                                            in this wild place

                                                    selecting a flavor
                                                    I've never had before,
                                                    mango-orange --
                                                    that will be my mood today,
                                                    the hottest of the year

                                                    a stench
                                                    that buckles the knees --
                                                    and so I bow
                                                    before the cave of the bear,
                                                    on the mountain of tall pines

                                                    peaceable men say
                                                    “war solves nothing”
                                                    one wonders
                                                    whose ashes still silt
                                                    the rivers of Europe