The haystack eaters

    Let’s march along pretending we are elephants,
    As if the sky rained fire and our last chance for salvation
    Was to become these haystack eaters

    Whether you are my son, cousin, friend, enemy, acquaintance, or stranger
    Let us eat this haystack together, my gray brother in captivity
    Ruminating under clouds as hot winds blow around us

    Cleaning the moss from one another’s toes with twigs held by trunks
    As we attentively listen for the careful beating
    Of our own elephants’ hearts, or the hearts of elephants unseen

    Circumventing the globe in a single bound
    We explodingly return from our voyage
    Our legs barely supporting us, like rickety columns erected on the plain

    May no man rest carpets on our backs
    Nor force us to sound our trumpets
    For we talk best in elephantine whispers uttered through mouthfuls of hay


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