K.A. Hays
It's Not For Me But I'm Here In It

and when I'm trudging through tall grass to the downed tree I trip
on an empty bottle of Two Hearted Ale,
unbroken in the onion grass and wild violets, just by where the two-hundred-year-old oak
split-slammed and splintered into bits in a tornado,
but I'm used to tripping and falling and catching myself and getting up–
my mother always said she should have named me Grace–
so I get myself up off the ground with green-stained knees
and a white-throated sparrow whistles, O dear, not for me,
not for me
, which I take as a sign,
but not a sign that signifies, because nothing does, really, even criminal acts
seem not to signify if acted by the powerful, no one really given what’s due, no one really seen–
and it seems this two-hundred-year-old tree
that twisted in the storm and spun to the