Finding What Is There

I wrote a poem about my two brothers
The first time I was in New England in Autumn.
I live here now.

About this time of year
I collect the fallen
Leaves with a crappy rake.
I can only think when I am raking.
Every time I realize the same thing.
That art is just showing what’s there,
Beneath it all.
My mind is as bad as my rake.

I wrote the damn poem as a companion of sorts.
I’d fallen in love with this girl, also a poet,
Whose best writing was about her brother’s
Death, about the lengths people will go
To bring back their loved ones.

I cried when I read it,
I felt weak, I went outside
To let the wind batter me
And scatter my thoughts.
I hate her poem,
It makes me think about my brothers,

I live here alone
You know.
The girl never answered any of my letters,
Like the leaves, loving me is the last thing
On her mind.
I’m as good as dead to her now,
And my brothers too, for that matter,

All I know is the maintenance of my small home,
The collection of the earth,
Sitting at my desk at dawn
Every morning,
Hoping to learn from the sunrise,
And the grating scrape of my rake.

-Jordan Jace, class of 2018