|Oct/Nov 2001 • Poetry • Special Feature|
He's waited by the dripping halves
of carcass till blood splatters
down the sky's spine and pools
at the west horizon. The hills
rise against midnight, hazel-dun
under a half-sliced moon.
If there are stars, he can't see
them for the smoke swirling
behind his eyes.
The pupils watching him (his only
son) are pinpoints of panic.
A breeze finds the back of his neck;
but no, it's just his own
chill wonder: God
can do anything He dooms
or asks or promises.
Still, Isaac breathes.
A father's fist becomes nothing
but its grip on axe.
The only light's the one that burns
this altar. All night
it flickers a shadow's doubt.