New Mexico State University

English Department

P.O. Box 30001, MSC 3E

Las Cruces, NM 88001

 

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Puerto del Sol

Weirding it up since 1964.

Puerto del Sol is funded by New Mexico State University and the Mercedes Delos Jacobs Fund, and designed and operated by the students of the MFA in Creative Writing program.

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Pennies

May 25, 2018

 

 

 

Pennies 

 

That summer was a man

gathering fury like weather

was a sweaty ring 

 

on the railing was a lake 

green with runoff 

was a nest of water 

 

moccasins writhing 

down a river was white 

in the mouth 

 

fat in the head was long

in the snout with heat-sensing 

pits that summer

 

when we found blood 

in the yard as if someone

dragged from the door 

 

a mating ball of snakes 

in the yucca a headless 

hen strung up from the oak 

 

behind your father’s house

where all that summer 

we porch-sat and wished

 

on empties that glittered

the ditch across the street

as if they were pennies in a well.

 

 

 

Kate Gaskin's poems have appeared or are forthcoming in Cimarron Review, Drunken Boat, Nashville Review, Guernica, Bellevue Literary Review, The Florida Review, and Whiskey Island among others. She is a recipient of a Tennessee Williams Scholarship in poetry to the Sewanee Writers’ Conference and the winner of The Pinch’s 2017 Literary Award in Poetry. She lives in Montgomery, Alabama.

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