Against the grain of what any day could hold,
the back yard grows thick with cane
and hawks wait on power lines along the horizon.
Just out of view, my sons chase each other
throwing oyster shells and laughing. My daughter
draws pictures on the driveway in blue chalk.
The moccasin we killed last summer
coils near her in the shade. Inside,
my wife rattles pots out of the cabinet
for supper. She asks my mother something about
tomorrow. The sun drops and rises, drops
and rises. The hawks tuck beaks underwing.
The snake crawls off unnoticed. And the question
just hangs there in the sweet air.
Dream, in Open Chord
Jack B. Bedell is Professor of English and Coordinator of Creative Writing at Southeastern Louisiana University where he also edits Louisiana Literature and directs the Louisiana Literature Press. His latest collections are Elliptic (Yellow Flag Press, 2016), Revenant (Blue Horse Press, 2016), and Bone-Hollow, True: New & Selected Poems (Texas Review Press, 2013). He has recently been appointed by Governor John Bel Edwards to serve as Louisiana Poet Laureate 2017-2019.