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The sound was coming from so far away
we thought at first it was the breath we missed
the moment we were dead, that very day.

It neared us like a moan inside a mist
of wishes, harmonizing with the hum
of silence from a newly pulseless wrist.

It was the sigh that light gives when the sum
of zeroes grazes hills, cicadas saw
the day in half, and working men succumb.

We all were at the river of our raw
awakening, awaiting each to board
in turn to cross the current of a thaw.

Some balked at the sound, frightened. Some adored
its strange articulations as it came
like feathers, hovering. Some murmured, Lord.

The sound each heard as either grace or blame
was wind that called us: name by name by name.