THE THINGS HE LEFT BEHIND
for Elemore Morgan Jr.
They have no work to do today these cows of his,
no calves waiting for them to rise, no cud to chew.
They sit and look at us. They are not made to miss
anything in the way we miss things, a shade of blue
he used to offset pink and purple and red in towers
of cloud, how he set the force of water just so in pumps
in rice fields, the way he could make a little bower
of green on the horizon a place you felt you could lump
all you have in one little pile and live there showered
only by what the earth and air had to give, a jump
you could only take because he took you there. This
world, he'd say, is where you live, right here you do
whatever work you have to do. Notice how trees kiss
sky, how prairies open, these cows I made just for you.
September 1, 2011
*** Photo taken this summer at The Ogden Museum of Southern Art
*** Poem by Darrell Bourque, family friend and Louisana's Poet Laureate
September 18th is Elemore Morgan, Jr Day in Louisiana