Spring 1996 • Vol. XVIII No. 2 PoetryApril 1, 1996 |

Branch of Knowledge

To which I've hooked the swing that I found on the ground   This morning. The wind from the storm had broken the oak Branch. Rain water came through the windows. That was   Me running through the dark house, throwing down towels On the wet bricks, never once thinking—this is a storm   I will not come out of. The on-off lightning, the straight Talk of the thunder—one can't break under their influence.   The driveway nearly washed away, twenty ripe pears On the ground, and the swifts backflip among the stone  Walls through the smoke from something burning down The hill from me. This I know, that I might not know  This. Hot as it was before the storm broke the heat. I felt the heat. I felt the storm. I don't mean to   Go on about this. It's a mistake to cycle on certain Things, as the storm was, past now, certainly   Past, like some god we at one time wanted to believe Could stop storms, the family in the root cellar ready   To sell the family so

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