Bark Ode

This entry is part 17 of 91 in the series Toward Noon: 3verses


for Gary Barwin

It’s only in strong sun
that the winter woods resemble
a bar-coded label.

Today is gray.
I pause to stroke the bark
of a diseased chestnut oak,

ridges kinked and folded,
ordinarily straight lines
impossible to read.

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5 Replies to “Bark Ode”

    1. people in barcodes
      wedged between
      the bars of barcodes
      they travel into the world

      don’t feed them
      they become too big
      to return home
      range like slivers

      all around us
      a forest of shadows
      too skinny to see

      1. Nice! I like the notion of slivers too skinny to see — reminds me of when I was a (very skinny) kid, running around in the woods and constantly getting slivers in my finger. (Not too many barcodes back then, though.)

        My first several drafts of the poem played with the notion of bars in an open cage of indefinite extent. That was a little more metaphysical than I wanted to get, but it is closest to the thought I had while walking.

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