As many of you know, I’ve been writing poetry to go with Stephen Locke’s vibrant photos. Stephen reminded us today that it was the second anniversary of the Goodnight, Texas tornado. Here’s his photo of that tornado from April 22, 2010 along with the poem I wrote to go with the photo.
Goodnight, Texas, land of expanse and loneliness,
where the sky makes up for in height whatever you need
in width. Goodnight, tumbleweed and stark blue
against the gray fingers of cloud. Goodnight, billowing light
and speed, especially the turning away from and toward
that parents one errant tornado trip across the home
of sage and javelina, snakes pouring themselves underground
and the glistening vultures, who cleared out ahead of the front.
Goodnight, cobalt sky tipping darker as you rise. Goodnight,
rain and reflecting pond, where all secrets reveal themselves.
Goodnight, old story of old weather, and goodnight, waking panorama
of what’s to come. Goodnight to the whitest clouds, edged with
momentum, and the myriad angles of gray, surging ahead
with danger tucked into its folds. Goodnight, everything ready
to vanish, moved over the cusp of time by the coming stars
patterned on the clearest night sky the coyotes ever saw.