Duane Esposito

I insist death won’t soon arrive, my love,
that there never was a time crows didn’t sparkle.

& I insist, if we fail to hear, if we fail to wake,
words are upside down, & days are cold bone & grief.

& I insist sky’s a throbbing in fingers torn on concrete--
that it’s windows, crickets, the birds, & air.

& I insist we never get so bruised
that we strap bombs to our bodies--

deceived by the heroes we claim to admire.
Is there bearing on this ground as we stand beneath the sky?

How about now? Will death arrive now?
Here’s the impossible way we wonder

if we are alive, & I insist yes.
I insist on cosmos, insist we trust

for forty more years, at least-- that we wake
with comfort, kisses, & the dawn,

that no foreign mornings drag behind
the black heels of our nights.

I insist on shade near the ocean, or gulls in wind
& moving sky, or a blue-force that streams past eyes,

or tide, or this horizon. I insist this horizon’s the absence
of touch & nothing like eternity. What’s this world

we see, & why must it diminish the spaces we desire,
the God-like home we rest inside while the sky

burns orange & smokey. Aren’t the days freedom,
especially in sun, & isn’t God a word for look,

or tree, or branch, or boundary, distance, or old style energy?
We fall into unseen places. We fear this isolation--

our vast underneath. But like any August rain,
love says hello again to something we believe.