poem written in 1981
I have left my car along a road near Grapeland, Texas
and walked into someone’s field.
How lovely the border pines in the rise of wind,
the stalks of maize heavy with rain water.
I own no land, no home, and before the car is paid for
it will pass to others.
But I will kneel in these furrows,
and with my right hand pull johnson grass out of the loose soil.
Hold weed roots up to the sun
white and delicate as the bodies of my children.
From a pine tree, two hawks are watching.
Rising up, I am turning in a circle.
I sing, I bless this land. I sing, I bless this nation.
I bow down like a Muslim in the maize.