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A Time

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The problem—
it’s not been written yet, the omens:
the headless owl, the bobcat struck,
the red wolf where she could not be.
 
None of it done and yet it’s over.
 
Nothing yet
of night     when she called me closer
asked me to bring her crow painting
to stay straight across from her feet
so she could waken into it,
         remember her friend.
 
Of Old Chief alongside her shoulder
                           still watching over her
just as the mountain had done
throughout her Alberta childhood.
 
The Pendleton shroud bearing our braids,
her figure in flaming pyre.
 
The cards, the notes, the tasks
the things undone,     not done
and she with us        faraway
as this has always been    and ever
will continue.
 
                                    We meet we leave
we meld and vaporize from whatever
it was that held us human
 
in this life.
 
And all the beautiful things
that lead our thoughts and give us reason
remain despite the leaving and
all I know         is what you know
 
when it is over said and done
it was a time
                  and there was never enough of it.
 

Allison Adelle Hedge Coke, "A Time" from Streaming. Copyright © 2014 by Allison Adelle Hedge Coke. Reprinted by permission of Coffee House Press, http://www.coffeehousepress.org.
Source: Streaming (Coffee House Press, 2014)
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A Time

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