The Woods in Concord
Down by the oaks tonight you might still find a musket boys but stay lively for the feral cats in the underbrush. In the forest we carved from a still greater forest there was the lesser forest we lived in. Have you seen the boys of means up at the old stone brook, they will say you feel pretty narrow for a good boy. They will ask you if you fall every night, and for what. You'll hear the story of three decades of winter and worse luck for someone else's daddy. They will sell what they got for free and give up freely anything no one else would buy. Down at that tumbledown a boy might find himself a black charger with wet haunches— no, it's a tree. But mark it, the older ones whinny, playing older in a fortress up the canopy, if we'd wanted to whittle you into a gun, we could have, if we'd wanted to light you up, we could have, if we'd wanted to strangle you here in a crib of black twigs and moss in the grim dark behind your house, we could have.
Copyright © 2011 by Seth Abramson. Used with permission of the author.