On summer evenings, after rain

Across the drops of streetlights
faces shine and fade with time and other
forces of destruction and deterioration

Blankets that we pull across our
sore and frozen memories that
cry out so pathetically
for comfort and for warmth

The hour has already passed
for final judgments falling down
for making up excuses that
not even we believed

Centuries, like dominoes,
teeter, waver, slip and fall
until none are left who can remember
any other life at all

Millennia of mystery
centuries of confusion
decades of disaster
become years of empty long and
those days we lost to dreams

Vagabonds in stolen clothes
will try to rewrite history
because the lessons that we learned
are not the ones they taught
Birds and flowers try to tell us
stories buried in the earth with
bones and swords and walls that fell,
and rose, and fell again

We are crushed beneath the heels
of soldiers left on battlefields
to cry, and die, and rot and mark
our histories with their curse

On summer evenings, after rain
when clouds hold back but can’t stop light
we will sit and read our books
and listen to the aching trees
telling us the only stories that we need to hear
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