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Scarecrow on Fire

Everything is brushed away, off the sleeve,

off the overcoat, huge ensembles of assertions

just jars of buttons spilled, recurring

nightmare of straw on fire, you the scarecrow,

the scare, the crow, totems gone, rubies

flawed, flamingo in hyena’s jaws, noble

and lascivious mouth of the gods hovering

then gone, gone the glances, gone moths,

cities of crystal become cities of mud,

centurion and emperor dust, the flower girl,

some of it rises, proof? some of it explodes,

vein in the brain, seedpod poof, maybe

something will grow, another predicament

of bittersweet, dreamfluff milkweed,

declarations of aerosols, vows just sprays

of spit fast evaporate, all of it pulverized

as it hits the seawall, all of it falling snow

on water, flash of flying fish, breach and blow

and sinking, far below creatures of luminous jelly

constellated and darting and baiting each other

like last thoughts before sleep, last neural

sparks coalescing as a face in the dark,

who was she? never enough time to know.

from Fall HigherFind it in the library

Copyright © 2011 Dean Young
Used with the permission of The Permissions Company, Inc.
on behalf of Copper Canyon Press.

Published in Dean Young Poems

This program is supported in part by a grant from the Idaho Humanities Council, a State-based program of the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Any views, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this (publication, website, exhibit, etc.) do not necessarily represent those of the Idaho Humanities Council or the National Endowment for the Humanities.