Daniel Bourne

After Eden
by Daniel Bourne

Already in the drowned field they are fishing out
the last of the herd, white necks resting on the trunk
of the stunted mulberry they stood under during rains,
its red and black berries just inches from their lips

as if their appetites reached in that direction.
In life their flood went downward: into grass, the shear
of each green blade that made the cud inside them sharper, the
rumination of those fortunate to survive

until suddenly they are dead. And we watch it from our house.
Even on dry land, the news is never like we were promised, the fruit
never close enough that we can eat. And the owners to come next
will always wonder whether we too suffered much before the blow.

 

Published in Cider Press Review, Volume 22, Issue 1.

Daniel BourneDaniel Bourne was raised on a farm near the Little Wabash River in southeastern Illinois. His books of poetry include The Household Gods and Where No One Spoke the Language, and On the Crossroads of Asia and Europe, a collection of translations of the political poetry and essays of Polish poet Tomasz Jastrun. His poems and translations have also appeared in such journals as Ploughshares, Guernica, American Poetry Review, Field, Salmagundi, Plume, Colorado Review, Virginia Quarterly Review and Cimarron Review. Over the years, his stays in Poland have included a Fulbright Fellowship for translation in 1985-87 and a graduate exchange program between Indiana and Warsaw University during Martial Law in 1982-1983. He teaches at The College of Wooster, where he edits Artful Dodge. See more at https://danielbourneblog.wordpress.com/

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