(after the murder of Yitzak Rabin)

While black ink marches out in caps
this latest catastrophe around
the folded paper on my porch
how the varnished edges of your leaves
seem to titter elliptically
as if a barely perceptible laugh
rose through your limbs
and spilled.

It almost cheers me up to see
how carelessly you lean
(it would give me pause)
and toss over the gusty edge
of a bluff which drops away sheer
to an orchestra pit of rock
and noisy surf like fake applause.

Your rhythmic swing stays unconcerned
with the slippage of distant hills
or glare of the sunís lowered eye
askew in its blue vacancy.
How tree-like, such unconcern
for catastrophic change or hurt.
How me-like to envy that and unavoidably see
just below, just now, a trickle of dirt
give way to the leeching waves.

© 1995, Norm Goodwin.

Norm Goodwin resides in Seattle where he divides his time between dentistry and poetry. He has a MFA from Warren Wilson College. His work has appeared in such journals as Jacaranda Review, West Wind Review,and Fine Madness.