I stood with my dad at the edge of the woods.
Can you see already that it is night?
The forest behind our house humming with moths
like an army yet to be summoned.
I can’t remember a single word we said,
or what constellation of big ideas I might have been
bent upon connecting, until one moment
when the conversation paused, or turned,
and our attention returned, like a breath
to the bulls-eye where we stood,
the last blab of pave, the final capillary
that dropped down from a tiny feeder road
called Pine Cone Circle and joined up eventually
with all the rig-swept interstates and big boxes
glittering somewhere in the night, each porchlit address.
Above us, a light in the second storey window
where my mom must have been up late reading.
“This,” he said, and I knew at once
that he meant all of it, the black Honda Accord
parked a few feet away, as much as the starlight
filtering through the lace of poplars and pines
that fanned above the driveway; the vast and intricate array
of distant, throbbing cities no more or less
than the tiny, folded wings of my sister asleep.
“This”— he said it only once; a twin engine plane
was passing overhead, dragging its tail
a red blinking light among the pond of stars--
“is the event of God.” And, all at once,
I disappeared, and every noun became a verb
that fused into a single flame
burning absurdly bright and without cause,
with the now just uttered awe
and we were standing there, one bankless blaze
my dad in me, and I in him;
in the center, in the heart, in the muscle, in the meat:
Never, Never, Nothing, Now.
Originally published in Diode