Archive for March, 2011

Somewhere Between Chetek and New Auburn, Wisconsin

Posted in My Poems on March 2, 2011 by paulscotaugust

Somewhere Between Chetek and New Auburn, Wisconsin

after William Carlos Williams

The Seefeldt farm is abandoned now, the fields so
barren not even weeds or wildflowers make much

difference. The amount of life left in the barn depends
on the mercy of wind and the velocity of rain upon

wood. Out back, livestock pens sit empty, the fences a
pile of kindling fallen down into hieroglyphs. A red

Farmall tractor sleeps in the corner pasture, its front wheel
sunk axle-deep in mud. The farm was known for raising Barrow

pigs and hens, the meat sold at the Barron County Fair glazed
with BBQ sauce, but after Mr. Seefeldt died it failed with

hardly a fight. The mossy farmhouse roof lets in the rain,
pooling onto the dirt-floor basement which soaks up the water.

The only sign of life, a stray dog walks beside
the silo sniffling at the hard dirt, a long-dead scent. The

memory of food overcomes flight, and the burn of white-
hot hunger compels it to stalk the ghost-shadows of chickens.

Paul Scot August

Originally Published in Hobble Creek Review – Issue 1, Vol. 5

Nominated for a 2011 Sundress Best of the Net award.

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Aubade, Pleasant Street

Posted in My Poems on March 2, 2011 by paulscotaugust

Aubade, Pleasant Street

Awakened by the changing light, I press my face
into your neck, breathe deeply of last night, and get up
from your oversized couch. It’s too early and I need

to leave for work, my clothes in a pile with one shoe.
Fresh light leads me down the hallway to the shower.
Outside your bathroom window, the sun rises

over Lake Michigan, and a single bird does what I cannot.
When I come back out, the smell of coffee stops me,
but the bang of a dumpster lid in the alley below jars me

back to you, wrapped up in a blanket with two cups
on the end table, a cigarette lit, and your eyes asking
me what you won’t. But I dress, get down on one knee

and look under the couch for my one missing shoe,
then put it on. The awning below your open window
snaps in the wind, and other steps echo down the hall

until they end with the closing of the front door. You lean
into me, but all I can think about is how the sunrise
in my rear-view mirror will blind me as I drive away.

Paul Scot August

Originally Published in The Los Angeles Review – Volume 9, Spring 2011