Wheatfield with Cypresses. van Gogh
by Jerry Ratch

There's no sky like that
with twisting clouds shot up into by cypress
trees that are so like dark green flames
leaping out of the earth, as if a dark green
oily pool were on fire underground,
and this was all that could escape, was
its essence.

And all across the bottom,
a plain, a ripe wheat field bent this way
and that with riffs of the wind, the wheat
so ripe by now as to be directly edible.

The rest, some blue and purple
lumps for hills, not that different from
clouds. And then green spinach,

and a gnarled tree or two that have known
the earth and fear the sky.

This poem first appeared in Seems Magazine, 1986.

Jerry Ratch has published 12 books of poetry, the novel WILD DREAMS OF REALITY, and the memoir A BODY DIVIDED, the story of a one-armed boy growing up in a two-fisted world. His work can be purchased through the author’s website: www.jerryratch.com (email: jerry@jerryratch.com) and on amazon.com. Currently available manuscripts: a new novel, THE GREAT SAN FRANCISCO POETRY WARS, and two new poetry manuscripts.  Poems published in: Antioch Review, Apple Valley Review, Avec, Beatitude, Like Birds Lit, Carolina Quarterly, COE Review, Contact II, Ironwood, Language and Culture.net, Louisville Review, Maryland Literary Review, Milvia Street Journal, Negative Capability, Nerve Cowboy, Negative Suck, Public Republic, Seems, Slant, Verdad, Tonopah Review and others.

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