The flatlands inhale. Roots scrat for a grasp
on thin air, a gasp against the window.
A train drags all the landscape in its wake.
A field is skinned like elastoplast from skin,
and all its boundaries are undone,
and in the pocket at his breast a scythe.
Bushes are turned out, the quickening grass
at the verge is frisked. Clouds lump a trembling sky
in his windpipe. And all the bends shriek.
But it’s not down to the hills that there is
this, nor to the charging lake, that there is
this drubbing of blood behind the temples.
The Scythe scores this out: I have lost the notes
and what will I do to make them out
in a land deaf as stones to itself?
He balls up the shade-barred Eden printed
on his bag; his fingers bleed a black bloom.
And all and every leaf a sharp demand.