a literary journal published by the Black Earth Institute dedicated to re-forging the links between art and spirit, earth and society
rise and join. I don’t want to spin
in the whirlpool’s vortex until my skin
and bones are mud and leaves. Let me not
fade like the spines of books nor shatter
like a glass of water rattled off the table
by an earthquake. Don’t let the crabs
and eels pick me clean until no memory
of fat or muscle clings to my architecture.
I want to be the last scared generation,
give birth to the first sacred generation.
Let the weather rage, loud and improbable,
over a landscape written in green and blue
crosshatched on fields of yellow. May my eyes
see acutely, and my hands hold firm
on the tools I’ve chosen. Let me die
in the sun-green heart of a forest.
I don’t want to die in the dark.
I don’t want to die in the ocean.
Timothy Otte’s poems have appeared in or are forthcoming from Denver Quarterly, the minnesota review, SAND Journal, Structo, and Painted Bride Quarterly, among others. His criticism has appeared on LitHub, the Colorado Review, and Chicago Review of Books. He is from and lives in Minneapolis, where he works at Coffee House Press, but keeps a home on the internet: www.timothyotte.com.