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Jacob Steinmehl

of

Florence, AL, US

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steinej0@seraph1.sewanee.edu (Jacob Steinmehl )


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Laden

by

Jacob Steinmehl

I tremble...
bear the sight of the soulless,
when death blooming November
encircles me in a wintry shroud.

Quiet the morning speechless
Stillness consuming all under weight,
I hide in the understory
of the great vespertillionid bat.

Above the canopy barren,
it's plumes ruffled around my head
Now chilled, no life no gift
merely shallow grave, empty shell.

I struggle to arise,
my limbs walled in, cemented
Laden by the myriad mortared stones,
each paper-thin, crumbly, insignificant.

Mortality makes perfect sense
The cycle continues, unaware
That our defenses are crumbling
Unwilling to resist the burden
Finally crushed into the earth
Like so many fallen leaves.

I was forsaken by warmth that night,
helpless like the frozen ground
Like all those before us,
Now beneath our feet.
But the ground does rise into
new crags, summits,
shapes new souls
and the dawn reincarnated me
to face the next frost
and I tremble...