Missoula in a Dusty Light

by John Haines


Walking home through the tall
Montana twilight,
leaves were moving in the gutters
and a little dust...



I saw beyond the roofs and chimneys
a cloud like a hill of smoke,
amber and dirty grey. And a wind
began from the street corners
and rutted alleys,
out of year-end gardens, weed lots
and trash bins;
the yellow air
came full of specks and ash,
noiseless, crippled things that crashed
and flew again...
grit and the smell of rain.
And then a steady sound,
as if an army or a council,
long-skirted, sweeping the stone,
were gathering near;
disinherited and vengeful people,
scuffing their bootheels,
rolling tin cans before them.

And quieter still behind them
the voices of birds
and whispering brooms:
"This Land
has bitter roots, and seeds
that crack and spill in the wind..."

I halted under a blowing light
to listen, to see;
and it was the bleak Montana wind
sweeping the leaves and dust
along the street.

Comments

  1. Great poem and makes me want to go to Missoula, for sure.

    ReplyDelete
  2. One day soon, I need to see the beauty of a Montana twilight with my own eyes. I'll go in the summer season.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Make that mid-summer. I'll have to post the pictures of us in Yellowstone in June...we almost couldn't make it because of the snow!

    ReplyDelete
  4. Life healing - Nourish mind body soul
    Loving myself heals my life, i nourish my mind body and soul as I recognize more and more what a unique, loving, beautiful and wonderful person I am.

    ReplyDelete

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