Bellwether

There: a being visible
in the edge of the forest,

barely solid in the dusk;
silver mist, cloak with no face within.

Unwilling to find it supernatural
until other options are exhausted,

you call to it using names
of living people it might be,

ending with “Hello? Hello?
when there is no response

and there is still no response
with those greetings. Day dims

and that being, now firm
and opaque, moves into clear sight

in the backyard.  You still can’t be certain
of what it is, but it seems honest

and ominous, not trying to hide
as it moves toward you. 

You’ve heard of such things 
lurking in other lands, poorer lands;

bellwethers, harbingers, 
avatars. Perhaps divinity,

perhaps depravity, perhaps
something not defined well

by your limited experience. It seems
all news in recent days suggests

such beings have been among us
at all times, are more numerous 

than ever now.  You stare at it
approaching across land

you thought was safe,
thought was your own.

It’s stopped now, stands
in your sightline. Takes

the measure of your regard.
Waits for you to name it, then

to move toward it or flee;
waits to name you as well,

since it sees you as a silver mist,
a cloak with no face within.

None of us have names now
or faces. All of us clouds of fear

looming in each other’s woods
on the outskirts of safety.

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About Tony Brown

A poet with a history in slam, lots of publications; my personal poetry and a little bit of daily life and opinions. Read the page called "About..." for the details. View all posts by Tony Brown

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