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Standing Rock, Part I

By Veronica Golos

Have I stepped back in time, or forward?
A graveled road, hovering flags, the sound

of waves against chunk rock -- and
voices billow into birds,

created out of chant, and so --
The Lakota gift of ululation, and the gaunt land, the eager dust.

Iridescence in the deaf hills.  The water of the Missouri inconsolable,
its exhale exhausted.

Men seated in circle, cello drum-sound and song, an ache
a cry out, or the cusp of something, a credo, rough, full of smoke

the myocardium of loss.
Yet, their voices quiver and fire, a kind of mouth against mine,

a face inside my face,
magnified, for aren’t

we each
other’s mirrors.

Added: Thursday, November 3, 2016  /  Used with permission.
Veronica Golos

Veronica Golos is the author of A Bell Buried Deep, a midrash/meditation on the biblical story of Sarah and Hagar, winner of the Nicholas Roerich Poetry Prize (Story Line Press); Vocabulary of Silence, a witnessing from afar the war in Iraq (Red Hen Press), translated into Arabic and winner of the New Mexico Book Award; and Rootwork, poems in the voices of John & Mary Brown (3: A Taos Press). Her poetry has appeared in Spillway, Meridians, Drunken Boat, Cimarron, Contemporary World Literature, Prairie Schooner, Verso (Paris), Poetry (London), Rattle, The Feminist Wire, World Literature, and journals in Iraq, Denmark, Syria, and Kuwait. Golos is co-editor of the Taos Journal of International Poetry & Art, poetry editor for the Journal of Feminist Studies in Religion, and core-faculty for the Tupelo Press Seminars.

Other poems by this author