Open House (2)

Robert Lietz

And so they find themselves, addressing
as if by heart

the unresolvable God-things;
and there, in the dark
ahead of them, the many seedings stick,
the voices of newsman fade,
smug and 3 steps late, the voices of sons,
averaging for mean, keeping
the stools warm, where veterans kick in,
patterning this love of sorts
between a species and its Maker. And what
chaste lusts, wrestled up from dark,
spark love tonight or lingering bed chill!
I ask a little more of it

than I had thought the house could give,
and of this sooty rain, and of that barn,
lacking its hind-quarter, dropped in the next wind,
and of these trucks I follow
from the Veterans tonight, configuring
their onslaught and retreat,
the nude reflector silhouettes, shivering
in mists and possum smoke,
and of these boys fuzz-busting griefs,
seeding the mall rush
or searching logic through to back-seats.
But who stands up to it?
The kids, camcorder-quick, at cash and crack,
imbue their smokey arguments,
settle into the old pasts, as comfortable
as stockholders, waking
to play their large hearts out, to play their sad spines out
in chiropractors' nightmares.

And who stands up to it? And who,
trembling tonight,
like the rearview, trembling on tired shocks,
begins this burn at field's edge,
on the slopes by rail-lines, leaving behind
scorched earth
around whatever's left of totem, trying his hands
at real estate, and finding,
in the evening's plowed hurrahs,
a song to store lives in,
sitting bales another spring
or accelerating state routes,
running his toes through the raked stones,
around the lions' heartless perch,
pleased by the stone eyes set
to guard the homes unloved tonight,
the skeletal homes begun,
deep into sub-divided

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