A bald eagle in a riverside fir stares at the uncarved faces of a thousand pumpkins sagging into frost behind a barn of faded planks. Hours pass. Who will blink first? It is that sort of morning for the heart; the living are giving the dead an honest test.A man has walked out to be alone with the earth. A man of his age, he equates time with grief most days, but now he has decided to wait. In the silence, where do his raised eyes fit?I'm not that man, I'm not between the fir and the rot of the pumpkin fields, but I'll pick up the gauntlet of his morning nonetheless, stand to the side of the fierce contest and not make the eyes of the eagle shift.
Used availability for Tim Bowling's The Thin Smoke of the Heart
March 2000 : Canada Paperback