He stoops and rubs his hand
across the rough stubble
of the mown wheat
and stares up into the noon sun
which reflects like a beacon
off the mostly empty silo
waiting for the mull truck
to kick up the dust
from the long track
off the highway.
He sifts the parched soil
through leathery fingers
and recalls the sea
of green that once stretched
as far as he could see
from the left of the barn
its doors now drooping
from progressing dry rot.
He remembers another sea
and the fertile paddies
the rice plants
beginning the slow shift
from green to golden yellow
stained here and there
the crimson of a fallen comrade.
He tastes the bitter soil
and realizes this land, too
is a place fit only for dying.
-Louis Faber
Louis Faber’s poems have appeared in Exquisite Corpse, Rattle, Eureka Literary Magazine, Borderlands: the Texas Poetry Review, Midnight Mind, Pearl, Midstream, European Judaism, Greens Magazine, The Amethyst Review, Afterthoughts, The South Carolina Review and Worcester Review, among many others, and has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize.