The Youngstown Order

from that soaring bridge east of Youngstown
i stretch to cast eye curl over the bridge rail and glimpse the
legion in their steady watch below on shore

i think of those trees' preform old souls who came to the river
for the call of it,

who before the Hardening cupped handfuls to their lips
drank just once of the flow and motion and were recruited,
lifted the cloister hood and beneath bowed faces
dropped root to the bedrock
they opened their blood to the river's,
came to steady in
a tangle of humus and limestone and seeping mud
of whose binded fates Earth would make model

tonight they hold heavy in a predusk canopy mist
it's cigar smoke in teeth
breath bated in the rib hollow
bone communion in the vapor

where the parish sits
that is church
where the order is set
there start the guard and
the holy study 

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