a beautiful thing, Roger


----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Roger Day" <[log in to unmask]>
To: <[log in to unmask]>
Sent: Wednesday, October 12, 2005 8:25 AM
Subject: A Song For My Father, also a snap, kind of

Low sun slants over monitor onto men crawling through mud
on their bellies, malarial, cockpits of smoke, legs broken,
kite in the mud, two kills already, smattering of shells in the treeline,
death have faced: Grant at Vicksburg, Wellington at Talavara
a paper warrior watches warily from the corner of my bookshelf

Hand-me-down template of a grandfather
origami into intricate folds
dotted lines even-up, chest-out, fly straight and true,
an avatar to a funeral in berlin, the face of battle
come home on your shield or with it
anything but a male nurse's white uniform
with it's green lapels and fob-watch.

The warrior steels himself for death by scissors
a loose pile, fern-spike on my floor
a transit camp to MIND away from mind
a shedding this autumnal day
hard cold twigs, bare branches
kind earth breeding hawthorn
for the spring so once we hammered
stakes together in the earth
so now I see his eyes peer
over glasses slipped on his nose,
his face screwed up in thought
strong arms heft the bodies.