September 21 – World Peace
Mary Swander

The flag outside my window folds into itself.

The pole falls over and becomes a hitching post.

The road winds down the hill and fades

into the distance, carrying no one, nothing to a cadence.

The fences surrounding the fields disappear,

the grasses and wildflowers returning, growing shoulder-high,

the grasses and wildflowers spreading across the horizon,

all borders and boundaries lost, all watches dropped,

all guards replaced by nightcrawlers who tunnel

through dirt, rich black dirt, never knowing sides.

Mary Swander is the Poet Laureate of Iowa and a Professor of English at Iowa State University. Her most recent book of poetry is called The Girls on the Roof.