Beautiful Moon

Her waist-length hair was
wrapped and entangled
around a post and up
into the barbed wire

Snow drifts had blown up
around her narrow waist

The guy who found her said
that she looked so beautiful

I had thought the same thing
and believed the same thing
and said the same thing
almost forty years earlier
when she was working the register
and I was bagging groceries for her

Everyone said later how kind she was
How sweet How she would do
anything for a friend and
how beautiful she was

She told me once that she wished
she could go away to college and
she wished her name was Amaris

I recently searched her name on
the Internet for special meanings
and found The most beautiful girl
in the entire world and then No
words can explain her beauty

But she ended up by herself
in a field along a fence line
in the snow with her long hair
wound around an old wooden post
and I think the last thing she
had noticed was how beautiful
the moon was and how the
ring around it was expanding

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Bill McCloud

Bill McCloud, a three-time Teacher of the Year, has been teaching American history since 1974. His new book, The Smell of the Light: Vietnam, 1968-1969, published by the Balkan Press, consists of 107 poems that take the reader, chronologically, through his year in Vietnam. David Willson, poetry editor of the VVA Veteran says the poems rank “right at the top of the heap” of Vietnam War poetry. Dr. Jeanetta Calhoun Mish, the current poet laureate of Oklahoma, calls the book “necessary reading.”

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