Whispers are falling
on the rooftop. The chatter of night
rain drips among the stones,
takes root and collects in vessels
that hours before were
only bowls full of night,
reflecting no one, remembering
nothing not spoken, not yet broken
beyond the tongue. These
whispers claim the heart is
an aging wine. These whispers
say your father is falling with the rain.
Yes, there’s something odd
about the sound of all this
falling, this clatter of night
stammering beneath the eaves.
It’s grief that gathers in vessels
that only minutes before were
but time spinning the wheel
of night, still remembering
no one, still reflecting nothing
not spoken or broken
beyond the tongue’s missing shadow.
This sound of falling tells you to
think of your eye as a new religion.
This sound tells you that
your father will always be
falling inside these rooms of rain.
Vernon Fowlkes Jr. lives and writes in Mobile, Ala.