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Sport 15: white horse black dog


page 64


A child is playing
at the edge of memory—in sand
behind a house
the child has made a river,
a trickle small
as the birth of the real

river, whose real
music the child hears playing
beyond the small
back yard—it tastes like sand,
the sound of the river,
and sounds like grown-ups talking in the house

with visitors. The house
seems huge, unreal
or holy, the river
made of metal and light, playing
from gold to sad silver, the sand
a trickle small,

a somehow to be trusted small
belief: it will outlast the house.
The child balanced in sand
at the edge of the real
hears visitor’s voices, a strange record playing,
and sees a brother in the river

page 65

carrying a brother across the river—
how, from here, they both seem small.
Are they playing
a game, or should those in the house
be told, is this real
or something like sand

flowing through sand?
Halfway across the river
the brothers change places, a real
laugh, and then where are they? A small
bird flies from empty river to silent house,
the child goes back to playing

in tangible sand, in memory, a small
corner given over to the talkative river, the visited house
that for a while was real, the funny music the record was playing.