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Doug Potter Jan 8
They gather under
the steeple, beneath
spire and holy cross,

when I run past on
Sunday mornings
especially when

it's sunny with
leaves budding
I think of lifting

the preacher's wife's
dress to her waist,
her eyes glued

to the sky.
Nov 2018 · 125
Marcie Mae
Doug Potter Nov 2018
She loved **** early & too often
was her uncle Mike showed
her how doggies do it &

she taught me how
to howl into
the sky

loud enough
to startle
crows

cause them to shiver
from the oaks &

I loved that girl
who left town

a blue Chevy
it was, so
long

ago.
Oct 2017 · 2.5k
Bus
Doug Potter Oct 2017
Bus
Two Greyhound days
final bus
hair mottled

last step down
her deformed
leg like

a frost seized
cornflower
my sister.
Oct 2017 · 1.5k
Erogenous
Doug Potter Oct 2017
I encircled her waist
with my hands and
lifted her, not as
a trophy, but
to  kiss.
Jul 2017 · 583
Height
Doug Potter Jul 2017
Don't jump from
that three story
building,

woman with no
shoes and rag
dress,

wait until
it's on
fire.
Mar 2017 · 620
South Dakota
Doug Potter Mar 2017
I am lost again
beyond the hills
where we made love

under the South Dakota
sun in the wide, wide
open as the wheat

lofted toward the bluest
of June skies and we
rolled and rolled

into an indifferent
world forever,
forever.
Mar 2017 · 531
Short darling
Doug Potter Mar 2017
Hello short darling
I would plow you
like spring earth

but your husband
has only been
dead eight

eight months and I
fear the shiver of
my thighs

would be a cold
cold reminder
of him.
Jan 2017 · 1.2k
Fact
Doug Potter Jan 2017
From a straight back wooden chair I see
a light blue ceramic bowl filled with
tangerines next to a desktop radio
tuned to National Public Radio
all sitting on my oak table

and out the bay window
birds bicker over seeds
overflowing a feeder,
a raccoon scours
the earth below;

I keep in mind the fact
all of these things will
be gone from my
sight one
day.
Jan 2017 · 738
A dog's life
Doug Potter Jan 2017
Take your average dog
it does not partake in birthday

parties or attend weddings,
theatrical  events

bar and bat mitzvahs
nor dabble in oil painting;

yet the pooch makes
the most out its twelve

years of life and appears
happy when compared

to the seven billion
humans on earth.
Jan 2017 · 843
For Aunt Ruth
Doug Potter Jan 2017
I  should telephone you but I have just grated fresh
****** root upon warm fettuccine in a red bowl
and it needs  eaten before the olive oil settles;
you have been in my position
many times and are used
to the wait, my dinner
is not.
Jan 2017 · 1.2k
The indelicate back booth
Doug Potter Jan 2017
The man sleeping in the diner’s back booth
will not care  if your mother suffers  from
plantar diabetic neuropathy or that your
children read **** and steal *****.  

No,  trivial matters will be of no worry
to him because he ****** himself while
dormant and leaving  without  others
knowing will be of primary concern.
Jan 2017 · 1.3k
Raccoon
Doug Potter Jan 2017
It is five-thirty a.m.
I step outside for
the newspaper,

not four feet away
a raccoon sits on
its haunches like

a paunchy Buddha,
smiling as only liars
and sick animals

can; I toss a half
eaten piece of bacon
between  its  legs, pick

up the paper,
back away,
away.
Doug Potter Jan 2017
Entangled in plastic
and  fishing line
eyes pecked by
crows; a new
America.
Jan 2017 · 563
Iowa January
Doug Potter Jan 2017
Atop a fresh
fall of snow

a blood red
cardinal

awaits
spring.
Jan 2017 · 478
American dreamer
Doug Potter Jan 2017
I search for the best lay of land
nestled between hillsides
beyond concrete

where dirt roads wander
a place of birdsong
and gut laughter

few  fence posts
and sleep filled
nights.
Jan 2017 · 1.0k
Beautiful sleeping woman
Doug Potter Jan 2017
I know she does not dream of me
nor should she;   there are so
many beautiful things other
than whiskey *****.
Jan 2017 · 481
Abandoned brick factory
Doug Potter Jan 2017
There are  fingerprints burned
into these kilns, leather hands
once held  waists of women
with wide hips who gave
birth to children

with gaunt  faces;  now, the bricks
lay across America’s streets
forgotten.
Jan 2017 · 797
Passing
Doug Potter Jan 2017
Every morning she awoke
as he fetched cups and bowls

from the cabinet, the sounds
were gentle awakenings, like

sparrows hopping across
a window sill; oh,  so, still

and quiet the home
became.
Jan 2017 · 620
Domestic violence
Doug Potter Jan 2017
In every American state
county and town

women walk barefoot
on broken glass

looking for an
open door.
Jan 2017 · 675
Waiting
Doug Potter Jan 2017
He was a champion boxer
turned alcoholic
who wandered

east and west
on the town’s
railroad tracks

until death;

after his funeral
his wife spent
her days knitting

and thumbing through
newspaper clippings
awaiting her husband’s

return.
Doug Potter Jan 2017
She arched, and peeled
a red plum into my
mouth, including
the ragged pit;

though she had the charm
of a pumice stone, I did
not spit or complain.
Doug Potter Dec 2016
My classmate Martha walked our school’s
halls for thirteen years, few students

talked to her because she drooled,
walked like a puppet, and had

greasy hair; there are  poems
I can not finish.
Dec 2016 · 654
Innocence and Tornado
Doug Potter Dec 2016
She runs from the garden with a tomato worm in her palm
leaving behind a doll, chocolate milk, and banana.

Behind her and thousands of feet above, a green-black
anvil cloud muscles in  from the southwest, close to home;

far from her mind.
Dec 2016 · 497
My old friend
Doug Potter Dec 2016
Near blind
no longer able

to follow the path
under the bridge

to stream’s edge where
White-tailed deer bow

and drink
pink tongues flick,

eyes
wide.
Dec 2016 · 1.7k
Peony
Doug Potter Dec 2016
You will not see me until
four full-moons circle earth

when I burst forth late
May with colors flush

red as *******,
ivory, and blush pink;

it is winter now
and I rest.
Doug Potter Dec 2016
These winter days go one by one
and seldom does much happen;

yesterday my cat murdered and ate
a chickadee on the deck and the blood

and snow mixture left a pattern
similar to what a painting of

Vincent Van Gogh’s severed ear
might look like on fresh linen.

I let the killer inside, she licked
her paws--curled on my lap.
Dec 2016 · 883
Love, slow and sure
Doug Potter Dec 2016
is like cotton twine,
if you put a match

to string, it will
burn away,

but if dipped
in beeswax

the flame will be
slow and sure.
Dec 2016 · 539
Bald Eagle
Doug Potter Dec 2016
Winging on thermals
across river valleys

counting days until
death hones-in;

lead pellets
swallowed,

prey
eaten.
Doug Potter Dec 2016
Said a good Christmas Eve is sitting
in his recliner, TV cranked, drapes
barely parted,

bottle of Nyquil in one hand,
remote control in the other,
waiting

for the evening news
to end and football
to begin.
Doug Potter Dec 2016
Nothing in this alley to crow
about—backboard and bent hoop
leans against an old refrigerator.

Over at   McMillin’s place
bags of garbage pile atop
a turquoise Chrysler.  

I’d give the family a pick
and shovel   if they bury
their old basset after it dies;

it’ll probably keel,
the first cold day
of 2017.  

My boots like this alley
even if my eyes don’t,
it hasn’t seen

a snowplow this winter
and, why should
it?
Dec 2016 · 672
Gravity speaks
Doug Potter Dec 2016
I am  law
in your life;

you can  jump
high and long,

even  grow
wings, but

there is no
escape,

you will
return.
Dec 2016 · 1.0k
Thirty four words on desire
Doug Potter Dec 2016
Basil, paprika, cold Hungarian goulash,
bleu cheese and stale cinnamon
coffee cake dominate
the taste of  your
mouth and skin;

it’s not because you are
slovenly that pulls me
into you, I am alone.
Dec 2016 · 821
Ice
Doug Potter Dec 2016
Ice
The  babies sleep soft
as flour beneath
our sagging

roof and ice begs
deformed limbs
down

upon electrical lines while
we wait for the blizzard
to hold breath.
Dec 2016 · 1.0k
Aspiration
Doug Potter Dec 2016
Tonight, I pray tomorrow
an orchestra brazenly
plays, and hounds

bay in tune, the sun
melts a path in the snow,
blue morning  stars glow;

all, so I can find my
sad and lonely
way.
Dec 2016 · 534
Childhood recollection: Cat
Doug Potter Dec 2016
No sound for hours,
looked under the sofa
behind two woodstoves,
beneath the sink where only
mama goes; finally, in the cellar
covered in a week of ***** clothes,
                                    
                   ­                         kitty, Bella.
Dec 2016 · 1.2k
Equestrian
Doug Potter Dec 2016
Your hair falls
on my chest,

I call you
cowgirl,

you say giddy-
up horse,

hips
click.
Dec 2016 · 527
French #1
Doug Potter Dec 2016
Red bud, je m'agenouille devant vous,
votre  départ  jusqu'à ce
que les plis s'épanouir.
Dec 2016 · 749
Aunt Estelle's secret
Doug Potter Dec 2016
Her home was clean, immaculate
summed the place,  like  washed china

pearl polished, Estelle’s maple floors
smelled of good soap & right

after Sunday lunch, before dessert
she would saunter

to the bathroom
& throw-up.
Dec 2016 · 493
Seen and unseen
Doug Potter Dec 2016
There are plenty of diseases around, take
an American motel room, shine an
ultraviolet on wall switches,
pillows, see seminal fluid
& mucus splotched like
a Jackson *******,
these are seen,

now,  flick a light & open your eyes
& recognize the overt sickness of
racism, spread  like jam
across American
bread, widely
viewed,
unseen.
Doug Potter Dec 2016
Mothers are drowning their
children and piercing
hearts with nails
because they
fear ISIS

and Jordanian
military will
eventually
slaughter
them like

goats.
Dec 2016 · 878
Lesser departure
Doug Potter Dec 2016
I remember as you stood bare feet
tiptoes on the red linoleum

reaching up to pull
the shade at dusk;

I left before the sun rose
you slept weeks

before realizing
there was no return.
Dec 2016 · 418
Until the fever broke
Doug Potter Dec 2016
She lay in bed for hours
tossing like a small
boat in big
water

I sat in the old recliner
watching as a jay
might its sick
fledgling
Doug Potter Dec 2016
I learned of life’s fragility
as I left home for

fourth-grade class
one May morning

to find boots with
a body attached

under our
tall, tall

juniper,
tree.
Dec 2016 · 783
No explanation
Doug Potter Dec 2016
He followed the buck past
the wormwood barn

down the game trail
into and out of

three hundred yards
of multiflora rose

(so thick his jeans
raveled like terrycloth)

to shoot and leave for
dead, walked away.
Dec 2016 · 495
Horse meat children
Doug Potter Dec 2016
Food for thought, the school
is torn down, McDonald’s
took its

place, and the old man
living in the corner
house

masturbated on his  front
porch until the police
stopped him

is decades dead, I don’t
remember his name

but the poor as horse meat
children who attended
class with me

I see like clean
glass.
Doug Potter Dec 2016
She dug ***** after
***** of soil until
the hole was

long, and deep enough
to cover Brownie’s tan
and white speckled
body;

I was twelve years
old, and Beverly
fourteen.
Dec 2016 · 747
Pretend
Doug Potter Dec 2016
Sometimes I smell your hair
and pretend to lay my
chest against you

like on those nights after
building  a pine  fence
around the yard

of  a Baptist preacher’s
house in Georgia
forty miles

from cold beer and café pie,
and then I remember that
was 20 years ago

before you and me
drove different
highways.
Doug Potter Dec 2016
Cur pillaged
garbage bag

Tampons strewn
cans licked

Rotten pumpkins
beneath canoe

Neighbors argue
redneck chatter

Dead squirrel
atop  car

Wild garlic
crooked fence

Open door
pour coffee.
Doug Potter Dec 2016
This  is all  you need
to know about  my
life  :

I live on a hill near a river
where eagles
hover

Coyotes run past my home
with a cats in their
jaws

They are eaten fur,
sinew,
bone
Doug Potter Dec 2016
Jingle click
keys, hinge
squeak;

step on  five
gallon bucket,
hoist out

window, disappear
Durham Avenue,
walk.
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