I could be afraid of dying among shards of sweetgrass
tall enough to swallow the sky
but I spend my days walking in damp ragged scruff
lining the street
where lienholders come to check locks and fix loose nails.
The young men are gone.
Women wait for government checks.
Children wait for a bell that will set them free.
Old men wait for something like a legend to come true,
a story, like thunder in a snowstorm,
like water that collects in fallen feathers,
something to sing about around the fires we carry inside.