It’s finished. Waiting’s all that will remain.
The gossip now must go unverified.
Blue smoke from leaf-piles, smoldering like pride,
Hangs here, a ghost, a storm-cloud that can’t rain.
Last night, the county’s final weathervane
Fell in the high winds. Old roofs, stripped bare, preside.
Take down the tattered self you’ve crucified
And let the crows wing through the fields of grain.
The sagging fence will never stand up straight.
Whatever’s not ripe now will never be.
That pain tormenting you will not abate,
And in the windows of vacated banks
You’ll see yourself, passing by aimlessly.
You cannot change your life. Give up; give thanks.
Ryan Wilson was born in Griffin, Georgia. He holds graduate degrees from The Johns Hopkins University and Boston University. Recent work has appeared, or is forthcoming, in a number of magazines, including 32 Poems, Able Muse, First Things, The Hopkins Review, Iron Horse Literary Review, The Journal, Measure, Modern Age, Raintown Review, River Styx, The Sewanee Review, The Sewanee Theological Review, and Unsplendid. He is currently a doctoral candidate at The Catholic University of America.