Sometimes deep inside a cemetery
far from the man with a shovel wiping his brow
lucent harmonies of unseen birds
blot your chaos completely.
You are clean again.
Heart in the trees, it could leave you.
Here, a huge grave for Jim and Vera,
their son sat beside me in art history,
never took notes.
And no! a small square vault
for the ashes of Tom M.
who could not understand why
we were giving our senior class money to Peru
and called me to his desk more than once,
voice of Bad God on the crackling intercom,
you are in trouble, trouble, yes,
all your friends’ faces turning toward you,
alive and in trouble, just you wait.
Hi Tom.

Naomi Shihab Nye