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Thomas W Case Mar 2020
When I was a boy on the farm in
Missouri slaying dragons and
making swords out of sticks,
my Dad got me a coonhound pup.
He named him Festus.
Dad was a real Gunsmoke fan.
Festus grew, as I did, and we
traveled every inch of
that 120 acres.
There were two streams that
ran through our land,
and a pond south of the house.
We had 60 head of cattle and
several calves.  Festus would
help me chase them.
When I went to bed for
the night, I heard crickets and cicadas,
and always Festus, way off in
the distance howling and barking.
He didn't mind touring the
farm with me, but he
did his best work on his own,
late at night.
Now that I'm an adult, and
Festus is long gone,
I wonder if anybody can
hear me howl in the
no less than two hundred souls lie
        clustered along the shoreline
        lowland they call a town.
there where the hilltops look
        below, where salty waves
        in unending sequence
        lap the rocks.
the foam floating still is fading
        and the icy gloom of night is gone.
the tug-tug of the diesel engine
        interrupts the balmy silence
        of the sleeping town.
        here is a variant
        (or is it?)
        on new island soil
        tread one another foot.

away now from the busy hum of
        factory, from the hurrying trucks,
        daredevil drivers, the unwelcomed
        whistle of the morning train,
        from the strained scream of the
        lumpia vendor, from the sophisticated
        melody of nightclub music, from the
        alms-begging cries in crowded sidewalks,
        from pretending graded glasses seeking
        sheep-skin, high-pressured ticket seller.
        away form the honk-honk of waiting
        limousines, the haste of presses
        accommodating headlines, the cackle
        of the radio announcer.
        it takes a sea to part the two,
                and many others more, yet the
                watery distance do mend the broken
                piece-part of the broken whole.

broken by the water barrier, part of
        the broken scheme – a stray mass
        the grown untamed.
blame it on the ills of war, a frenzied
        sickness, a cancer-growth.
        a callousness undisguised
the city’s pleasure is a farmlife’s
        leisure and these
        in different garbs exist.
not even mindful of the worms
        that eat up the human heart,
        like a rotting fruit.
with colored goggles
        the hue is blood-red and shady black.

o city of pain,
vineyard of desire
o burial ground
        where lay bedfellows
        they who came, stayed, gone,
where stumps and leafless trunks
        are bare to the sun,
        breathless and devoid.
while fingers are busy
        counting metallic coins.

no, not a flood shall cleanse
        this wild and wanton fleshliness,
        nor upturn the barren farrows,
        not the rise of the tides
        nor the fury of the winds
        not even the whiplash of a strong hand.
the deluge in every clayey figure
        in the farm and furnace.
the going up beyond the worldly
        watermark of the passing tide
        that is man.
the man
        the self
                is the starting point
                from which the line
                        of the circle revolves.
                        and in our chambered brief hours
                                of aloneness, shall speak
                                a shrill deep-seated voice
                                to which we shall be all ears
                                        and shall tremble.
Martin Narrod Apr 2014
as soon as these blue speckled
socks go, that's it. A new bright black death.A solemn weir on a stark horizon.Give me a reason to wear color. My hueless affidavit
runs me into the Earth, where I sprout up
a pallid keb- brain orf'd, you could drag my etiolated ebon
body through the ovine fold or take me to the theater. When I was just a minor teg, I sheared my mim kip, I fuckinggave it to you outright. In this little
cote my wan mien nigrifying; my calamitous black, quaffed full of congou in demitasse, of souchong & saucers. My atrous wethered body albicantly degenerating in the atrous sun. I'm crusting over with wanness and you, you're fortifying in the cwm where I used to yaff and stray. Your ovivorous hunger,something I never knew, when first you came for my jecoral flesh, just another bot digging through my soft toison. Like Dall's Prometheus being sheared from the flock-you cut me away. In this drab and achromic world, you put the wanness in my flesh, the gid in my heart. Still.
Just these blue socks are left.
Written Sitting against an Oak tree outside of a family friend's farm in Fond du Lac, Wisconsin

— The End —