Lamentation Forest

You lean your head against the pine tree bole
    and look off to the side,
    feeling as though a hole
sits in your solar plexus crater-wide,

seeking solace from a soulless tree.
    While walking through this wood,
    coat dragging on a sea
of crumbling cones and leaves, you think, I could

keep walking till the world’s gone. The gray coat
    you wear is nineteen sizes
    too big for you. A boat
had sailed its owner toward where the sun rises.

Your fingers grasp bare branches thin as pins
    projecting from the trunk.
    Soon winter’s biting winds
will whistle through these boughs. And soon a chunk

of shrapnel will rip into a man’s brain,
    a man whose six-year-old
    stands in a forest. Rain
will fall like shells. Wind penetrates each fold

of clothing, every gust a howling squall.
    The raw air makes you tremble.
    Soon a silent pall
will coat the land as armies reassemble.