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Postscript to the Aeneid

These are no arms or men the poet sings,
But just some very ordinary things:

The plastic station wagon seat, the grass
Of May reverberating through the glass;

My brother hooting to himself, my sister
Staring ahead, me picking at a blister

Then looking up to shout: a lamb was caught
In a fence. The car stopped. Children scooted out.

We helped each other through barbed-wire strands—
Shooed off like gnats by our excited hands—

And raced across the falling wave of ground
To where he stood—but, startled at the sound

And wrenching free, he trotted to the side,
Which made us stop and watch him, open-eyed

And empty-headed at the strange good cheer,
The unknown joy of what had happened here.

I am still there this moment, not alone
With UPS, blaspheming on the phone.

Freer than God, I am not what I am,
But the child He sees running toward the Lamb.


Copyright 2017 Sarah Ruden