In a former life, I was a poet. Someday I hope to be one again, but the dissertation has sucked all poetry out of me.
I thought I'd share a few of my old poems here, since it doesn't appear they're going to be published anywhere else. :)
This one is circa 1998. I was missing Iowa and my college friends. A lot. (I still do.)
for Jeff and Lisa Mather
We were both from the coast,
so Jeff, who had always lived in the middle,
took us to the combine dealers’ lots
and climbed over the machines,
pointing out his favorite hazard stickers.
At every mechanized joint,
a yellow and black rectangle showed
silhouetted figures losing their heads
or mangling their arms.
You’d think the fields would be littered
with dismembered Iowans. But no:
nothing but order to the horizon.
Still, we walked carefully at the town’s edge,
aware of the machinery that could come
roaring suddenly from the corn
like memory, as it does now,
cutting me in places no one warned me I’d bleed.