The old dream freaks the mind from its music.
A lane divides the listening fields of corn.
A man walks. His shadow shows where sun splits
lindens. He saw them planted, saw the road
re-paved, saw the tear of artillery,
the rut and tramp of armor into wheat.
He saw the sprays of blood-bloom in the cows’
ribbed hulls, saw their necks dip, lips splay with froth.
His steps began in setting the saplings,
in seeing the round little root graves dug
by men whose faces flickered out of shape.
It was his animal soul that fluttered
in his throat at the half-empty table.
His shadow stoops where light divides the trees
while crows flow over the corn toward the night.
Danny Fitzpatrick is the author of the novel Only the Lover Sings. His new translation of Dante’s Divine Comedy, illustrated by sculptor Timothy Schmalz, was published this year in honor of the 700th anniversary of Dante’s death. He is completing an MPhil in Creative Writing at Trinity College Dublin, and his favorite bird (right now) is the Scissor-Tailed Flycatcher.
© 2021, Danny Fitzpatrick