I suppose the sun sings ballads
to the clouds, a conga line weaving
to the twilight bar.
And buildings nod to trees fanning themselves,
planning themselves into suburbs,
barbecues under the stars.
The dimensions of a heart
are found in the flowerbed,
chatting up sober roses for a lark.
How could anything exist without us,
there to orchestrate and name
each petal and leaf into flame?
I look at the waters of New Orleans,
too placid after the rage of the storm
and wonder, how could it happen—
it wasn’t dropped from a plane
or shot from a rife,
it wasn’t legislated after too much debate—
it isn’t the aftermath of an insurrection,
it isn’t the demented plan of a despot
tearing the world apart—
this is the result of an earth being itself
against all men wandering
across the shelf of history’s misery.