Frost in the Low Areas
The health survey said
he would live to 76 and I, 86.
Something to do with men’s
hearts on their worn old grapevines.
Something to do with their will
to lay down and die. In the westerns,
how glad they were to give their lives
away. Bad guy, if you can’t shoot down
a junebug’s nostril, you don’t stand
much of a chance. Men, thinking
they don’t have to cut power
to a bound-up sawblade.
Just think, Dennis says. Ten years
to yourself. No one stealing
the sheets or the last of the ham.
He says this as we make pesto.
This is how we joke with
each other, ha ha, and then
we kiss. Seriously, he says,
imagine no more socks
on the mantle. My arms
the sharp odor of garlic. Basil.
Parmesan cheese. Tonight,
a frost the herbs
won’t survive. Twilight
we worked the rows,
frantic, our gentleness gone.
Behind us, nothing but stems
and their faint heat. Before us,
the first crisp morning.
About the Poet:
Karen Skolfield’s manuscript Frost in the Low Areas won the First Book Award for Poetry from Zone 3 Press and will be published fall 2013. She is a contributing editor at the literary magazine Stirring and her poems have appeared in 2011 Best of the Net Anthology, Cave Wall, Memorious, Rattle, Tar River Poetry, Verse Daily, West Branch, and others. Visit her online at http://www.karenskolfield.
About the Sound of Sugar:
We’ve loved reading the work that we’ve published (clearly), so now we want an opportunity to better hear our contributors. We will feature an audio recording of a poem from one of our seven issues, read by the poet and updated every couple of weeks. This an open invitation to all contributors from any of our issues, we were delighted to print your work, now we’re eager to hear it.