Tom Brody, how you fall behind
and lag in front of honest men
who plod the dusty vagrant trail
from town to town in hope of work
who ply the land for meat and bread.
And none will break the shuffle bowed
surrender of three feet ahead
or pray gray runes of gravel stone
but husband spit within dry mouths
and fixate on three feet ahead.
The waif with blood wept on her thigh
the young boy, porting plate and cup
the wife despaired of threadbare miles
who fixates on one meal ahead
a thousand times they pass you by.
Tom Brody, you have overslept
and in the weight of summer's haze
gay finches squabble in the stream
squirrels - staccato up the ribs
to nibble acorns from the trees.
And none who knew the vagrant days
recall your face or know your name.