Show Us a Sign

We know ourselves by the crumbs we leave
and the footfalls we diagram
like sentences from another room; we are torn
between clearing the evidence
of our presence, or planting it cleanly,
leaving the samovar to center the tablecloth
like a flag in the planet, every day.
When the acorns hit the roof and the first
cup of coffee sends up steam
like a kerchief, the world does not
stop grieving or warring but there is a moment
when the clown-devil squirrels and hidden-picture
birds hold sway with their entertainments,
and the noise that a penny-size seed makes
on the roof of a whole house knocks
like a message from the blameless portion —
the one our parents hoped they could deliver us to —
of the sky, with no way to answer.

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