The meadow shimmers in the October sun,
       on warm blue asters, like stars fallen from the gravid sky;
by noon the earth, an impatient hunter,
       fires the wind, blacking the trees, searing the fallow.
What can man make with stumps and scorched forms,
       the ridicule of old age, unredeemable failure?

Every false move leads into deeper failure;
       history becomes a dictionary of dead forms,
burned faces on harvested fields lying fallow
       waiting for evil to plow the good under. Then the last hunter
goes cold like the moon, and the silken skirt of the sky
       falls, and wild dogs shred the terrified sun.

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This article originally appeared in The New Criterion, Volume 19 Number 9, on page 27
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