A grim wind tones in the chimney,
dead uncles beg for prayer.
Fearing they can’t be heard,
their voices boom
like giant lost clowns
adrift from the circus.
How can such men have sinned
who stooped in shallow fields
where movement inched its way
and town was the edge of the known?
I thought they rode to heaven
on clouds of gorse-fire smoke.
Arms and hands swelled from work,
they had crab apple hearts
that couldn’t be hurt.
Now, we’re told that the heart is a muscle.