mercy 4 (after M.L. Smoker)

one morning you wake up and
the reasons for everything
are gone

the sky has already fallen
and the wind changes direction
continuously—the trees
wave wildly as they try
to keep their roots
grounded, hold tight to their
branches and seeds and leaves

the birds have long ago
disappeared into
the expanse of nowhere
that used to be a horizon
not even a line anymore
but bottomed out
down and far beyond away

you appeal to all spirits
any spirit listening
asking for some small
sign that things will return
to a state of understanding

slow down at least and give
you time to adjust—to what?
what is left of any
configuration? will it be
improved by changing
the velocity?

nothing is sensible or even

you yourself appear
only dimly in the mirror–
perhaps even your bones
have taken leave and only
your thoughts remain

beside themselves

In July and August I wrote a series of poems inspired by M.L. Smoker’s poem “Mercy”. As I’ve been having trouble writing anything new, I decided to revisit them, and I’ve been worrying this one, #4, all week. I’m not exactly sure it fits the Earthweal challenge this week of a haunted wilderness, but it’s in the spirit.

“Everybody’s crying mercy when they don’t know the meaning of the word.”
–Mose Allison

“Mercy” is not available online, but you can read about M.L. Smoker, and read some of her other works, here.

15 thoughts on “mercy 4 (after M.L. Smoker)

  1. The last 4 lines look like an inverted cross. Graphically manifested so well. One day at a time is all we can do now. Nice to hear Bonnie Raitt again, been awhile since I listened to her.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I think it fits the theme very well. Especially the appeal to any spirits listening! We live in hope because it beats living without it. Smiles.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. nothing is sensible or even / nonsensical

    Very much in the spirit of the challenge and the times, where everything seems haunted by a presence we lost some time ago — how long or what , nobody can quite say.

    Liked by 1 person

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