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Tending Better

CONTENT WARNING: domestic violence


Country woman shot in the back

Her husband killed her

My sister died face down on the road

as the sun went down behind their barn

Pain and anger

caused my woods to go untended

Anger and grief

squeezed me so tightly

I thought of dying

Buckthorn invaded

took over my woods

For eight years

it went wild

Got too thick to see through


buckthorn of the heart―

sunk its roots deep into me

There was little of me left

to do the work

Time and gentle souls loving me

loosened sorrow’s grip on my heart

I pull the buckthorn now when it comes up

Sometimes my back aches

I am tending better

JIM BOUR works and plays in Saint Paul. He wants to tell stories, so watch out! New places and people interest him as much as the familiar.


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