Your Cart

Tar | Poetry

Peering: Photography by Shawn Michel de Montaigne

In this time of fruition, a path recently inundated by rain.

Rain, and tracks, and green growth. Underbrush. Overbrush.

Birds skittering out of the way at my feet;

birds twittering unseen to my left.

Lusty brown river to the right, eager for the sea behind me.

Spectral leaf, detached.


Observing is the tar of life's highway.


I don't have the answers, but I know you aren't the question.

I've seen more here in these eight or so minutes than you've ever

noticed in your eight-year-old daughter.

How is that possible?

Yet you claim you love her.

If so, your love is but a greasy thin film

over the clutching desolation of your soul.


What is wasted when the sun is high and the sky puffs and blows?

"Priorities" are merely excuses to look away.

You've built guard towers around them, but they stand

over wastelands no one really cares about.

You don't even care about them.

But you do it anyway--you defend them,

because "that's what responsible people do." Right?

That's what you told me, anyway.


In the quiet spaces up here, the earth rocked and rolled.

The news called it a major earthquake, and the little

anguishers anguished and fretted and tweeted little

fearful electronic tweets about it.

But they still know nothing about their eight-year-old daughters.

Oh, they'd've cried if the quake claimed them, but the tears would've been

no different than if they lost a cherished piece of jewelry.


Shall I say otherwise and spare you the anger you feel,

seeing that I'm talking about you, the one reading this?


I don't think so.


From The Shadow or the Leaf


Previous poem

Next poem


Photography: Peering by yours truly