I am James Van Loon,
Gone since nineteen-twenty-three.
I remember this area,
this is where Dirk and I would have adventures.
The woods were our kingdom
and we both ruled the entire area together.
We would cause a raucous late into the night
after playing all day without rest
but now, now we rest in a new kingdom.
These woods, now gone, have been replaced by graves.
Here I rest in the afterlife with
my brother, my father, my mother and
three months from now the only sounds to be heard
are the wind in the trees
the crackling of ice below
and the soft chatter of tears above.
The fresh snowfall blankets our kingdom.
The colors of fall, vanished, and
nothing left but the white sheet
to protect us. A cutting wind blows from the west
chilling the mourners.
We cannot feel what they feel
see what they see
hear what they hear.
We no longer feel the late summer sun
the sounds of the peaceful breeze
or the twaddle in the trees.