On Rogation Sunday in a field in Kent
The flowing blessing is presently underway.
And in a building too shy to hold a woman
Of the blackest hair and an even blacker stare
The real sinner begs mercy for the whispered acts
Not yet committed.  And so she grotesquely hunched
Down the peloton of angles on one’s shoulders
Go fair lady, searching the desert now,
For but a drop of water coming from your heart.
Sepia words blow forth a dust bowl of their own,
Sounded to the crispy crunch of yellowing leaves.
While scarecrows create panegyrics to th’ nothingness
While a Parthenon of murder gawks at the sun,
She walks alone, hand-in-hand like a baby lost.
For getting sucked into an empty roynish hole
In the midst of a field’s sensual rotation
Is like wearing a gown picked by Russian-roulette.
For “now” and “then” are but two chads strewn on the floor
And she can read the emotions on a clock-face.
Recall a town hall that votes on fresh opinions
Will negate the vote to vote in the summertime.
The cold hand of Old Man Time’s on a sapling’s neck
And shivered shoulders are sold for the warmth o’ the self
With only coins stamped for Charon and taxes left
To send that from the starved lips of a thingummy
Qui’tly walking down this chilly old frog and toad.
Now she’ll mix olios of rare design from a’ far.
And let that elusive mercy return again.

Michael T. Smith

Michael T. Smith is an Assistant Professor of the Polytechnic Institute at Purdue, where he received his PhD in English in May, 2014. He teaches cross-disciplinary courses that blend humanities with other areas. His poetry has been most recently published in Tau Poetry Journal, Eunoia Review, Taj Mahal Poetry Journal, Zombie Logic Review, and the Asahi Poetry Journal. He also has critical work forthcoming in Symbolism and Cinematic. He has most recently attended the 2016 CCCC conference as well as 2016 NeMLA conference.​