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Foothills Panic

Apr. 13, 2014
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There's a grocery store at the foot of the mountain

Where they misspell the name so you remember it better.

You drive past failed motels and successful dead chickens.

The cavemen live in houses and the housewives live in boxes.

There's nowhere good to stay except the abdominal pouch of a marsupial.

There's water leaking from a man's car, strawberry ice cream from a woman's ear,

The sound of one branch of philosophy breaking.

There goes the zoologist with his renegade speculation on sleeping bats

It's nice to see an ineffectual man in his natural habitat,

Refusing to cooperate with local authorities,

Acknowledging only the iridescent plumage

Of the common rain gutter bird.

They have to put something at the foot of the mountain.

Lurid banner at gardening center reads: Cypress Mulch Madness.

The bread at the supermarket is always up against the wall.

The stockboys are laughing at your descent into irrelevance.





Matt Cook is the author of four books of poetry: In the Small of My Backyard, Eavesdrop Soup, The Unreasonable Slug, and most recently, Proving Nothing to Anyone from Publishing Genius Press. His work has been anthologized in Aloud: Voices from the Nuyorican Poet’s Café, The United States of Poetry, and in Garrison Keillor’s Good Poems, American Places. He lives in Milwaukee, WI. On Friday, April 18th at 7pm Matt Cook will be reading at Woodland Pattern as part of the Redletter Reading Series. An open mic will follow Cook’s reading.


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