by Gideon Burton
He’ll lessen these encumbrances. In time
you’ll find the dust to be the least of these
despite its progress: eyes to throat to knees,
the burdens empty every step you climb
along the cloudy mountain crags. The brine
you swallow thins its gruel and the fleas
that chew in grinding rhythms will release
their little jaws, will leave your skin, your spine.
But there’s no telling what might also go–
the bandage gone, the skin too pink and raw.
There can be curses heavier than mud.
But meanwhile in the curling currents’ flow,
be careful of that sharp and gripping paw
releasing you to silent, whitened blood.
Feel free to copy, imitate, remix, or redistribute this poem as long as you give proper acknowledgment of authorship. Image: flickr - angela7dreams