Finding Water on Mars
By October my skinny apple tree
that never bore fruit finally
looks dead enough to give
up on, the withered fist
of one dry apple balanced
in front of an orange moon.
Beneath these birdless skies
with the ground crackling
under frost, I think of my favorite hills,
fracked and draining into mud,
trucks gray and heavy in the breathy
dawn breaking up silence and years.
Yesterday a robot dragged itself
over Mars’ red hollows
and sent us messages of rivers, rain,
glaciers that carved continents
while in Florida pilot whales kill
themselves by the dozens, lungs
collapsing under their own weight
because they follow their injured
brothers onto sandbars, refusing
to let a loved one die alone.
Grant Clauser is the author of the books Necessary Myths and The Trouble with Rivers. Poems have appeared in The American Poetry Review, Cheat River Review, Cortland Review, The Literary Review, Painted Bride Quarterly and others. By day he writes about electronics and daydreams about fly fishing. He teaches workshops at Musehouse and runs the blog www.unIambic.com.