Death Renga | David Brunson

veeterzy via Pexels

— after Van Gogh’s Ghost Paintings

I dream a koan
a grove of olive trees boughs
swaying no angels

here fruit falling from branches
words falling beyond language

is this Eden or
the pain of Gethsemane
your olive trunks guard

a wooden silence you burned
the canvas anointed those

trees with fire named
all that nothing my master
and then you left

David M. Brunson’s work has appeared in Copper Nickel, ANMLY, Booth, and elsewhere. He is the translator of A Scar Where Goodbyes Are Written (LSU Press 2023).

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