the accident

Linking to De’s prompt at dVerse on enjambment

(Enjambment occurs when a phrase carries over a line-break without a major pause)

If i remember right,

his grandfather told

story of when

they were filling

barn loft with

hay crop of

rectangular bales in

clutches of six, hung

from clawed

bale hook swung

from hay wagon up, up, up


loft’s massive open


slide creeeaking toward back of

loft and released with a


when close to position of men stacking

bales (by hand) inside barn.

Metal framed hooks hung from

pulley on cable while entire

mechanism was

operated by horse power;  this day’s


 beast of burden was

neighbor’s loyal work horse, well-trained to

obey master’s voice commands.

They had un-loaded

a few clutches of hay bales when some-

thing terrible,  when some-

thing went terribly


The horse, wearing blinders,

un-expectedly sidestepped, shying

in fear from un-certain threat, whether

dog barked,  kitten scampered, or

barn swallow


that horse jumped off path, over low curb of wide

shallow well, covered by light lumber;

the now terrified animal’s weight

broke through


men watched helplessly as it





down  into

the  w




and drowned.

collateral damage


Groping slow-motion, sluggish

from sweetly dreamless sleep to

grasp thin robe, grab slippers in dark

to investigate the insistent rapping

on dorm room door.


Startle at troubled faces in collar and uniform;

an awkward visitation of starless midnight.

Stumble backwards toward rumpled bed,

mental fog pierced clean through as

unthinkable words erase reality.


No, dear God, NO!

Push the black panic away,

the fierce pain back into the Pit.

This monster is too horrible…

The incomprehensible can NOT happen!


Now dressed in fragile, trembling resolve

Must identify the broken bodies of beloved.

Bloodied, bruised by a violent vault of metal.

On white sheets, the cold tearless truth is blinding–

Absolutely alone on an axis-less earth.


Past numbing decisions and funeral’s fatigue,

grief rises from mounded grave sites

to suffocate this single survivor.

Nightmares and misery move in with baggage;

Wild sobs drown out the phone’s sad ringtones.


Anger burns at Death’s unrelenting greed;

flashes hot questions at God — “Why did YOU allow this?!”

Turns away from helpless friends’ futile comfort;

bends inward on already shell-shocked soul as

depressed thoughts, ghastly guilt clutch the mind.


Without permission, days and seasons move on,

and the others dare to go on living,  apart.

Faith’s mystery is always the epic struggle;

whether or not to trust…

to accept the inexplicable…beyond belief.



(With prayers for Brittany Vollmer who lost her family on February 23, 2013.)