Truth at the Door.

Center Road, Hardwick, Vermont

I stopped for a flock of crows this morning on my drive to work, half a dozen or so of them, pecking at roadkill. In the slow way of November, the birds contemplated me and then turned back to their feast.

For a moment, I got out of the car, just me and the crows and the morning too cold to be damp. Eight crows, two yellow lines, one dead tree, and all that snowy field and sky around me.

Driving, I had been thinking of the poet Lucille Clifton, who wrote the saddest poem I’ve ever read, “The Lost Baby Poem.” The poem that needs no commentary, nothing further.

Clifton wrote about sorrow, but plenty more, too. She advised, “You might as well answer the door, my child,/the truth is furiously knocking.” It’s a line I’ve returned to over and over in my life, one of my guiding stars. This November morning, cawing crows opened my Subaru door.

4 thoughts on “Truth at the Door.

  1. My daughter and I went to hear Lucille Cliffton read her poetry back when Trinity College still existed in Burlington. What a powerful night that was and one that I will never forget. A black woman speaking truth to her struggles.

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