Building with Post Rock Limestone


The compression of the Kansas sea laid layers
of dead extinct creatures inches below, softly molded
to layers of earth, the overburden peeled back
like so much dead skin; a seam of solidified bone.
Just as the seam was laid so the father laid the the fence posts.
The man laboring in veins with auger, plug and feather,
dragging posts on wishbone sleds, tipping, tamping,
stringing with wire. He built his family upon the plains.
The weight of rock bending his back
in the years of children and grandchildren.

We, too, can excavate the limestone rock,
with drill, plug, and feather, like our father.
We, who are children of the plains.
Heavy memories solidifying when exposed to air.
We tip and tamp our lives, layering
the bones in seams of years.
The fence seems derelict upon the prairie.
Rubble overgrown in dead tumble pigweed.
The rock, the foundation, rests beneath the earth,
while we who remain honor his name
and labor not in vain.