Necessity’s hour —
loss of the sweet garden flat,
of the pleasure zones

in ear, eye, hand, tongue.
Suddenly you are out West
befriending local

crows. They follow you,
those eschata of old age,
your leading edge and

raucous joy in be-
coming. You can hear them o-
ver the Interstate.

Author: Tom D'Evelyn

Tom D'Evelyn is a private editor and writing tutor in Cranston RI and, thanks to the web, across the US and in the UK. He can be reached at D'Evelyn has a PhD in Comparative Literature from UC Berkeley. Before retiring he held positions at The Christian Science Monitor, Harvard University Press, Boston University and Brown University. He ran a literary agency for ten years, publishing books by Leonard Nathan and Arthur Quinn, among others. Before moving to Portland OR he was managing editor at Single Island Press, Portsmouth NH. He blogs at and other sites.

2 thoughts on “Crows”

  1. Beautifully stark reflection on being in situ and contingency. To write about it, I feel I have to separate filial regret and concern for my dad as the author far away from the flow of hte images. To look at the latter, it seems to me the cros as friends evokes that cutting edge that cuts both ways, that insight and pathos of being equal with all creatures — in some sense feeling brought low, in another perhaps elevated in their instinctive immediacy–and so suspended in the middle of being. The perspective on pain and diminution as finitude is outlined by the tensions of the poet, nature, and industrialized civilization which come together in the final lines. Yet for me the poem shwos how this tension is anxiety perhaps but also a kind of flexible order open to divine otherness.


    1. Yes Steve. Thanks. The whole revealed by the kenotics includes the ‘raucous’ voicing of the bliss of being. Old people have to remind everyone of that: you can hear it ‘over’ the Intetstate (metaxu)!
      My new poems don’t often get that far, if I may say so, and I thank you for showing me how this one works.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s