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school-mandated poetry: day 11 / andropogon gerardi

published: 8-20-2019


to run outside barefoot
on a morning under a dead sky
amd still have the chill linger in my bones
long after the grass is gone, banished
with the memories dredging up

something is changing

"go ahead and run free," we say
trampling Andropogon gerardi underfoot as we play
in the limelight, the lifelight, the hubris of the plains
five-year-olds running towards a forever train

you and me, you dumb grasses, native to this state
I thought you were wheat, garnering my parents' hate
when I plucked your racemes out and scattered them to the wind
but it's not like the cows that once ate there would ever again begin

Andropogon gerardi- big bluestem, big dreams
but both you and I should know that nothing is as it seems
back to October 7, 2018, that accursed day
when I realized that there would never be anywhere safe for me to stay

I took a wrong turn- and before me unfolded
sprawling fields of what once was prairie
long grass stretching as far as the eye could see
and on the other side, a few scattered buildings
each one calling out to me

Andropogon gerardi- only one, not two I's
secure in its status, far from demise
if only I could be secure in the knowledge that I was the same
tall bluestem resists; the prairie remains untamed