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False Notions Fears And Other Things Of Wood
Repeatedly, that sturdy stump in me
bears up like stone,
beneath some ritual I see:
the blinding axe
swings up, holds,
that moment of its weightlessness
till I confirm the arm is mine;
I will it, grip,
feel moist the swelling handle,
the shudder rude,
the difference fallen.
Toward that chopping block
I carry in me woodthings—
through each stem and branch of me—
all so certain of themselves
they practice, like pains,
the craft of being.
They try to wrench away
before we reach that stump,
my woodthings and I,
in its brightness,
in my luminous saying
"I must go, must go
to the chopping block.
They know the brutal business
of my thinking;
I know they have no charity nor memory
to return the way they came—
came not from wilderness,
nor living trees.
Their craft and strength I test—
at the chopping block.
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