November 26

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A conservative palette is in place, here–
the reeds, barn, hawk-on-the-wire,

trestle, even the train, the same
exact hue of rust.

These are colors of decay,
if limited in range, abundant

in texture, rough snow
in warming air,

an off-white horse
kneeling in a swampy

pasture. It’s hard to keep
a station in the foothills,

but imagine how they
run over the rocks,

waves of words
and songs getting lost,

a few civilized fibers,
a net in the wild,

drawn too loose,
hopelessly so,

the Skykomish
is slipping its banks

now, full and fast
with its dreams of ice.

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