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Bundesland Bavaria

by Evan Jones

Between Deffingen and Denzingen,
            summer opened the road
forward, browning the fields and hillsides
            of a country so barren
that the smallest horse grazing seemed
            resentful and withdrawn,
no longer seat and throne of men
            but pigeon-grey splotch
on the Blaue Reiter landscape, inured
            forever to the flow
of traffic, where once it drank from rivers,
            and aware of itself
as fodder for the glue factory,
            as much cattle as the cattle.
Between the route the Neckar runs
            and the dirty Danube,
neither the chatter of nits nor
            the bleatings of birds
on the horse’s chest, spreading ears
            folding over the wind
as night comes on, while stones and woods
            stay no longer in their places,
begin to course, sing, and wheel,           
            like livestock once did,
leaving behind the parcel of the world
            over the larded breast
of Southern Germany: a resource,
            a wind through which
the horse rolls up to heaven
            its dull and stolid eyes.


Evan Jones was born in Toronto and now lives in Manchester, United Kingdom; he recently completed a PhD at the University of Manchester. His poems have appeared in PN Review, Poetry Review, and Poetry Wales. His first collection, Nothing Fell Today But Rain (Markham, Ontario: Fitzhenry & Whiteside), was a finalist for the Governor-General’s Literary Award for Poetry. His second collection, Paralogues, is forthcoming from Carcanet, as is an anthology of Canadian poetry that he is co-editing. (4/2010)

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