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Mountain Folk

The sign at the foot of the mountain
Warns people to drive away,
To go no further,
Not even to exchange a word
With any of them.

They wait in trees or behind boulders.
Who truly knows how it began
For them? Long ago, we know,
When a boy climbed
Into bed with his mother
One terrifying, thunderstruck night.
And his son, and so on,
All sharing a rancid love
That has continued for generations,
An aberrant tree growing
Perplexingly into itself.

None can be certain
Of his relation to another,
Some don't have the mind
To contemplate certainty.
They have stepped beyond
Even the animals they hunt.
Dim folk for whom lust
Is common as breath,
Who spend life falling in
And out of a love
They cannot know.
For them, the only law
is passion.

Beware their tendency to wander.
Their thoughts are as dim
As the steep morning air,
When they leave their worn nests,
Descend to the foot of the mountain
Watching for us, travelers.
They wait and hope
We will ignore the sign
And enter their world,
Climbing inside the grasp
Of their always fevered loins.

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