Once There Were Horses

It’s the barn.
It’s the dark.
It’s the latent heat
of wood, summers gone
encoded in cellulose
stacked and bunched.
It’s the horses shifting,
the horses breathing at night.
It’s night and breath.
It’s memory and breath,
remembered sweat
in the dark of the barn,
safe and dry—figment
of sweet hay like memory
just beyond recall.
It’s the ark of the barn.
It’s the horses, the horses
in dark sanctuary.
It’s the latent heat
of wood, of spectral
bodies of horses.
It’s fungible history
in numberless splinters
that hold the dark fast.
It’s the horses steadily
even now.

Cleveland Wall is a poet, teaching artist, and librarian. She is the author of Let X=X and many homemade chapbooks and zines. She performs with interactive poetry troupe No River Twice & with musical combo The Starry Eyes and hosts an experiential poetry series called Poetry Lab at the Ice House in Bethlehem, PA. She is falling deeply in love with antiproductivity. 

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