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Syndic Literary Journal



Stanley H. Barkan

Now the summer butterflies have come
like poppies in procession
in the cemetery of youth,
all the long stretch of children’s caskets
laid out in their cerements of innocence.
Around the black granite stones
—etched with finger-touching hands—
the clouds of white wings fluttering.
All the rent garments of the wailing mourners,
all the ashes fallen from the still detached sky.
And the milkweed flourishing
along the paths of passing glory.
There in the sun-covered fields of first things,
I sought my way through the glistening questions
hidden in the cobwebs set to trap the seeker.
Now, in the fullness of seeds
grown to fruits of promise,
only pits and pebbles remain to place
upon the markers monumenting memory.

From Strange Seasons by Stanley H. Barkan,
with complementary art by Mark Polyakov
(Cross-Cultural Communications, 2007)


Compiled/Published by LeRoy Chatfield
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