A Stahlecker Series Selection
N THE NORTH (WESTERBORK)
Winter came and went, spreading its iron grain;
the earth the color of ash, trees the color of bone.
In an interval between wars, spring and summer
passed, color advertisements for another country.
At a place where trains departed every Tuesday
a stick probes the exhausted mouth of morning;
the North shaves and washes in its cold mirror,
the trees claw at the doors of the earth and air.
The wind throws off its white sheet and wanders,
a wakeful child in a house deserted by the elders.
In icy furrows a thin wind is rubbing its face raw.
On a branch an oriole is punishing its one vowel.