Sunday, December 1, 2019
KAREN SKOLFIELD'S "DUE TO HISTORICAL ACCURACY, HAZARDS ARE PRESENT" (Issue 17)
DUE TO HISTORICAL ACCURACY, HAZARDS ARE PRESENT
—U.S. Army Heritage Trail, Carlisle, PA
Take another loop if you want
to jump wars, IEDs daisy-chained
in some cornfield’s center.
Thick middle of the M18 Tank Destroyer
guarding the only weeds
landscapers can’t reach.
That we won the Revolution:
a marvel, footprints bloodier
over every mile marched.
In the WWII barracks a moving body
triggers a voice that’s eager to tell
the favorite C-rations of soldiers.
Have I been separated from my unit?
In the parachute jump simulator,
I miss the drop zone twice.
My family’s in Massachusetts.
Dog walkers skirt the soccer fields
and a Huey’s blades bound by wire.
Within the WWI Trench Exhibit,
a visitor tries out the Aid Station,
surgical table the length of a child.
Those dangling legs.
He’s so good at being perfectly still.
Those who feel lucky
may guess their way to safety.
Barbed wire in a ring,
a mortar crater softened by erosion.
Two Pennsylvania children
zigzag the mock minefield,
triggering all the bells.
ABOUT THE POET POET
Karen Skolfield’s book Battle Dress (W.W. Norton) won the Barnard Women Poets Prize and was published in fall 2019. Her book Frost in the Low Areas (Zone 3 Press) won the 2014 PEN New England Award in poetry, and she is the winner of the 2016 Jeffrey E. Smith Editors’ Prize in poetry from The Missouri Review. Skolfield is a U.S. Army veteran and teaches writing to engineers at the University of Massachusetts Amherst.
ABOUT SUGAR HOUSE REVIEW
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.