TIMBRE – William Bortz

birds scream across the sky like an emergency
in another life I was a transmission pole—
I was energy; the blade slicing a flooding sky 
into wet slices—I was something 

here I am aging 
like tomorrow is a dream. here I am
trying to see appreciation as both
the phantom pain and the initial severing
removed from any damage I am wind—
not always cautious, but always

press an ear to an apple tree 
you cannot hear the fruit growing—
all you hear is the tree dying
to be a god is to name small violences
as necessary fingers on an unabridged body—
to be a god is to define suffering as human
to be human is to wait for a tender ending
William Bortz

William Bortz (he/him) is a husband, poet, and editor living in Des Moines, IA. His work appears in Okay Donkey, Empty Mirror, Back Patio Press, and others. His book of poems THE GRIEF WE’RE GIVEN will be published February 2021 from Central Avenue.

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