In the Field of My Heart
By Barney F. McClelland

A winter storm's
come early; too early.
Harvest half-reaped,
stalks green with hope
lay wind-sheared and broken.
Grains holding promise,
their bounty scattered
amid chaff and flurries
swirling backwards across
furrows hardened and cold.

On a small rise, an ancient oak,
storm-stripped, solitary, silent,
last of its stand.
Spared for the shade
she gave weary ploughmen,
her naked boughs launch
flocks of screeching blackbirds.
She watches, always watching
as gray mice skitter
from underneath gnarled roots
into eddies of despair,
gleaning the few kernels
of love left.

for Barbara McClelland Peters (1955-1987)


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