Three Poems by Paul Hunter

Thursday, January 03, 2019 1:37 PM | Debbi Lester (Administrator)

Believe You Me

Old-timers in the Depression when they were young

never thought things would get so bad so quick

wondered how they could go so far wrong

rambled around tried a little of everything

built a hutch to raise rabbits to sell till

they got sick eating rabbit couldn’t sell a one

tried keeping chickens in the cellar a night or two

then they stole a little rusty chickenwire

to fence them in around their old dead car

they thought would never start again until

they got evicted with those hens smell and all

drove off one winter night with the windows down

. . . 

As For Today

Doing the same things over

in season a farm life goes by

a certain order an expectancy

mowing hay to rake and turn

several cloudy days to dry

pulling a wet calf into lamplight

that now with the start of her

too late to go back to bed

too stirred for radio news

slow boiling water for coffee

as for today raking leaves

out from under the slow dying

maple that could be felled

cut and stacked but not yet

that even so might spring back

. . .

With the Farm Gone

What’s left but this oasis this

cluster of sheds and outbuildings

surrounding house and barn once

hard to build uneasy letting go

the home now they’re thinking of

jacking off its foundation onto

a trailer to tow away park on a lot

the barn to maybe pull apart

to label stack and sell out-of-state

to someone to put up with fields

that still reach away forever with

cows so it looks halfway right

and here with fencerows torn up

scraped away now all one field

plumbed and wired subdivided for

new owners what they like to call

Sherwood Acres A Leisure Development

with the woodlot already logged off

to make the down payment on

each new home’s cathedral ceiling

set smack in the center of

its one acre lot landscaped by

a bulldozer that’s carved undulations

along a winding deadend drive

that flattened the outhouse and filled it

and the well with handmade rubble

a stone fence picked out of fields a little

every spring to let the plow ease by

Paul Hunter

Paul Hunter is a Seattle poet and fiction writer who works on farming articles and reviews for Small Farmers Journal. He recently published, Clownery, a book of autobiographical prose poems.

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