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Thirty Days of Fall

Fort Snelling, 3 November 2003
for Tyler

In thirty days of fall
I hailed the crenellations of daylight
Beneath arrow loops of bloody sky
On uncertain wall walks of river stones

Fixing my senses to the march
Of crunching thistles like the deserted
Footsteps of a soldier left for dead and
Froze to the curtain wall of darkness

I await the windbreak of resolve
Pinned breathless by harmony’s moat
Painting light under a celestial barrel vault
Holding vigil with my son

Shivering on the knees of the drum tower
The beat of darkness departs the fortress
AWOL from the inner ward
Once in thirty days of fall