Landscape in Dolomite and Ferric Oxide
Northern Alabama

Jake Adam York

A darker place in the darks of the woods,
a copse or thicket, a small, perfect hill
hidden and familiar in the filtered dim,
a shadow daylight canít dispel.

A mound like a womanís,
covered with trees. The rise
the Choctaws say they crawled from
on the first day of language.

Almost the haystack wave
of a Cherokee burying ground,
or an elder kernel of earth
curled around a curl of bones.

But closer, a cairn,
not earthwork but stone,
a handmade hill
with doors for the wind,

to which we return
and know a furnace,
grey as an empty bullet
in which men have burned alive.
Originally appeared in Louisiana Literature

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