Nazi Youth in Bruge

The same beautiful hands
bricks laid, in love
with brick,
the same paint brushes
that wash the trim
blue, pulsing blue,
Belgium’s sky pumping
across Europe,
the same carefully dug
that lifts its head
into morning
its delicate neck
wired by gossamer

That same gossamer
that weaves blossoms
into lace, the dense
ecru lace of Flemish
fingers knotted with
years and love of

Their husbands
at home
in the field,
distant scarecrows
that leave indelible
patterns in the

That same earth
that sprouts houses
and brick barns
the color of

the color of stray
poppies spotting
canal banks

and cows
catching sunlight
in their flanks

that color
that dissolves
into concrete,

stray bunkers
remaining from W.W.II
dense and sprouting
hair of long wheat
and stray roses

which upon going into
requires the parting of
alfalfa clouds
the color of bruises
and thistle which brush
the udders
of cows

Then the walking into
stained with piss
and ancient doings of

While outside
hawks throw themselves
into sky
and one chestnut cow
mounts another

The same hands
that pull the udders,
the beautiful giving
lay brick which hug
for centuries,
drop wheat kernels
into furrows deep
as milk,
then wipe sweat on

These hands
that roll the nipples
of lovers, of pale girlfriends,
and wives
still, dipped
in darkness,
mark these walls:
the symbol
of lightning
gone wrong.