Detail from Dirty Laundry by Jamie Heiden, copyright J. Heiden Photography
Detail from Dirty Laundry by Jamie Heiden

Wm. Todd King

The Declination of Sunlight behind a Coal Tipple

The mountains shrouded away.
There was rain in the wind
like the onset of some cold glaucoma dimming away the world.
Tall clapboard houses,
the porch screening rotted and falling away,
the bare iron colored wood and the fields beyond,
a boar hide nailed to a barn door.
The thunder trundled away to the north.
The ground was trembling.

No one spoke.

A creaking of tin somewhere high in the roof above him,
dark water in the roadside ditch.
Kin long dead washed up and cast fey sidewise looks upon him,
the few things they hadn’t taken scattered in the leaves.
There was a cough in his throat that never left,
as if the lost sun were returning at last.
This is us, he said.
They went on.


Cento poem created from the third sentences of paragraphs from:  McCarthy, Cormac. The Road. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 2006. Print.