On What Must be Carried Out
In my dream,
you are leaving the house
on a grey day in autumn,
walking from the yard,
through the fields,
to the woods at the edge of the back 40.
You are wearing one of the sweaters
that we found piled in mother’s closet,
and you are carrying one of
the old man’s whiskey.
You have wondered enough with me
about whether the stories of what
he and his brothers did to the
The Travelling People
when they came looking for work
during the Great Depression were true,
or why he would tell children
about “what had to be done” back in those days.
I only know that, in this dream of mine, you are
tying back your hair in a iron-grey wind,
walking out past our crippled old scarecrow
and the drying autumn husks of our corn,
to spread libations over the place
where the woods are dense
and the vines always grow so thick.
Edward Doyle-Gillespie is a poet and writer from Baltimore, Maryland and a former teacher of literature and history, “I have always enjoyed story-telling and folklore. My current job a police officer has afforded me some great fodder for this love.” He holds a BA in History from George Washington University and an MLA from Johns Hopkins University.