The Last Song

by Joy Harjo

Joy Harjo

how can you stand it
he said
the hot Oklahoma summers
where you were born
this humid thick air
is choking me
and i want to go back
to new mexico
it is the only way
i know how to breathe
an ancient chant
that my mother knew
came out of a history
woven from wet tall grass
in her womb
and i know no other way
than to surround my voice
with the summer songs of crickets
in this moist south night air
Oklahoma will be the last song
i’ll ever sing

Last updated December 05, 2022