Another Ghazal

Monday, and here’s another poem I found in the book of Ghazals: Ravishing Disunities

Summer Whites

I want old-fashioned metaphor; I dress in black.
My son was murdered. I bear witness in black.

The graveyard shocks with rampant green.
In a rusted chair sits grief, enormous in black.

Died July 16, 1983.
Navy’s white headstone, christcross in black.

A cadnal falmes—sudden visitation.
Loy spirit? Surcease from black?

Grackles keen in mad falsetto.
Treeful of banshees. Fracas in black.

It should be told, of course, in small details
and with restraint (artfulness in black).

He was a sailor in summer whites in a port city.
He was walking, streets dangerous in black.

The bullet entered right shoulder, ricocheted.
In the ground his dress blues decompose to black.

I am Isabel. He was Jerry John. The dead
are listening for their names, soundless in black.

Isabel Nathaniel


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