• Nobody's Home

    Daniel Anderson

    Spring 2021

    All winter, these tangled canes
    were silver-thorned and vicious to the root. 
    But now, bearing black fruit,
    they deepen, blush, and thrive 
    in high, unruly lanes, 
    annihilating where they grow
    the fenceposts and corroded chicken wire 
    of some forgotten boundary line.
    The Cascade air is dry and tossed with pine, 
    but in the pure sun
    these thickets smell like wine, 
    a heady, tannin atmosphere.
    This late, the river mostly runs
    on ghosts of melted mountain snows. 
    The water winks and glisters as it goes.
    I can understand
    why one would build his cabin here, 
    though now the mossy roof is caving in. 
    Two socket-hollow windows stare.
    The plywood walls are warped and mushroom-gray. 
    Above what used to be a door,
    “Nobody’s Home,” soft, sunken letters say.

    Daniel Anderson has published three books of poems: The Night Guard at the Wilberforce Hotel, Drunk in Sunlight, and January Rain. He teaches on the faculty of the MFA Program at the University of Oregon.

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