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  August 2009
volume 7 number 2
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  Kate Buckley
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  Kevin Patrick Lee
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Kate Buckley August 2009
   

 

bio


photo by maja trochimczyk

    Kate Buckley's poems have appeared or are forthcoming in Bellingham Review, The Cafe Review, North American Review, Shenandoah, Slipstream and elsewhere. She is the author of A Wild Region (Moon Tide Press, 2008); a second book, Follow Me Down, is forthcoming from Tebot Bach (2009). Her awards include a Gabeheart Prize and the North American Review's 2008 James Hearst Poetry Prize.

   

 

American Queen

    - Owensboro

Two hours leave
off the boat that watches me everywhere
even on this riverbank where I sit

legs crossed, feet crammed into the only
other pair of shoes I got
and this old man's watching me

like he wants something
only I got nothing.

Two hours leave
and I am not going to waste it
on an old man with no teeth

I stare over the graying skyline,
rocked by the shadows of the boat,
sprawling, immense, eclipsing

even the yawning bridges
with graffiti in their teeth.

"A tarted-up cake," my momma said.
"New Orleans on a bad day," laughed my sister.
"But it moves," I said.

And in two hours will carry me
farther away
from this still, silent backwater

that goes nowhere
and smells of it too.

(previously appeared in A Wild Region, copyright 2008 Kate Buckley, Moon Tide Press)

copyright 2008 Kate Buckley

   

 

Miner's Pond

At Miner's Pond we use the past
to pull ourselves forward; rowing.

            - Anne Michaels

I sit on the bank, hand on dog's domed head,
finger the copper curls blazing in the last hour of daylight.
We are waiting for release.

There are faded vines still clinging to the hillside,
breathless sun choking dust-strewn air,
motes swimming in August sky.

We are waiting for the haunting that fades
come September, chill chasing away fetid mist,
whorls like damp ghosts in flattened grasses,

leaves behind nothing so much as sap singing,
scarlet creeping through every vein,
until at last we crawl to the shore and sleep.

(previously published in A Wild Region, copyright 2008 Kate Buckley, Moon Tide Press)

copyright 2008 Kate Buckley