It Took Some Doin’

is a way of saying that a task, once finished, was full
of unexpected toil, that, mid-way through, it forced you
into doing things you didn’t know you could or made
you redefine the terms or improvise. I’m thinking
of my garden this first clear night of frost, the stars
shifting suddenly into focus above the mulched
and tucked-in beds. It’s fall in the Ozarks, that season
when I might make the time to drive the backroads
and pull off at some vacant spot where crows drag shadows
through the woods and I could walk into the trees with them.
It’s been long time, but it would feel right, a deep,
as if half-remembered, settling in. And I might gather twigs
and light a little rattling fire I’d sit beside as night flowed in
to fill the steep dissections. I didn’t know how to feel
this place, its stone-bound lonesome note of packed
dirt roads and scorched rock twisted to some ancient
and unreachable ache, its squinting, stingy silence—or
so it seemed. It took some doin’. Like when our neighbor
backed his brand-new trailer half-way down the mountain,
through pines, blind curves and ruts in which long shadows
hid, and onto that sloping shelf where he leveled his new home
on blocks, one end against the bluff, one hanging into space.




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