Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Stories Of An Old Poacher \ The Tame Hare

Nancy:  The “kiak” in the poem is not a boat, but a Maritimes name for alewives.
Stories Of An Old Poacher
who lived here, in this house
who remembers Paradise
who names his guns, many guns
who shot the two bears between the eyes with a 22
who shows us the apple tree they were in
who shows us where the eel pots were
who had hidden lobster traps
who dipped kiak out of the stream every Spring
who gives us the three best recipes for cooking kiak
who always got his deer by the corner of the house
who points out which corner and where the deer fell
who smiles remembering roast duck
who smiles remembering his wife scolding, eating duck, scolding
who has maybe killed more geese than we have ever seen
who tells us of the thousands of geese
                                thousands of geese
                                every year, thousands
                                geese in the bay, geese flying over the house
                                geese at the lake
                                geese flying at night up to the lake
                                rush and wild call
                                and the noise of gunners
who looks at the bay and the sky over the bay
who shakes his head
who knows we can’t imagine
who says, it’s quiet now my dears
it’s quiet now
Alan: If we truly attend, our separate selves fade and what we notice is interrelationship itself.
The Tame Hare
Watching you,
I see how Dürer tamed his hare,
painted just so among the herbs,
forever watching
deft motions of a hand
immortalizing one small, cautious
Dürer talked, I think, as we talk,
around and obliquely to you,
sharing the general vicinity of your afternoon browse
at the crisp and sunny corner of the lawn,
lulling you past fear of stewpot,
dog bolting from sudden gaping door,
flash and heartleap of death.
Our voices are food enough
to draw you almost to our hands.
Or rather, you have drawn us
into your world, precise and spear-green,
making us sit and watch, and wait, and listen,
everything perfect and in place.
“Stories Of An Old Poacher” first appeared in Fencing Wildness (Slow Dancer Press, 1999)