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The Expulsion

From "Of Thee I Sing: Poems by Timothy Liu" (University of Georgia Press: 70 pp., $16.95 paper)

March 21, 2004|Timothy Liu

Time will erode our darkest memories

as faces of ex-lovers start to fade.

Nothing to hide, we lie beneath the trees

and linger in some surreptitious breeze

where kisses are blown to the edge of shade.

Time will erode our fondest memories

as angels descend with vials of disease

to infect the love our bodies have made.

No place to hide, we kneel before the trees

and offer prayers in vain. How to appease

the laws of nature we have disobeyed

even as time erodes, our memories

no match for the Almighty God's decrees:

All shall burn till the debt in full be paid.

Too late to hide among Edenic trees

uprooted. All of us down on our knees,

stripped of everything we own but a spade

in hand as death erodes our memories --

exhausted corpses laid beneath the trees.

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