Today's poem is by Mary Biddinger


What you did that day
beneath the tracks

and zigzag of crab grass,
coneflowers bending.

This, you said, prairie
. How the canal

worked you to buckshot.
A woman in an upstairs

window behind drapes.
Gravel elevator slick

below the thunderheads.
Your brother ransacked

every jar in search of keys
or maps. It took a year

for you to dig your way
to water. Maroon velour

of blood on your cheek.
A waitress offering cobbler

and a phone to authorities.
Pheasants connecting field

and table. It was rhubarb.
The sheets were polyester

satin. Bottlebrush, silky wild
rye, or your own tangled hair

underwater. The way it all
went down. Cyclones of rope,

flashlights, coriander skin.
The smoke from downriver.

Copyright © 2007 Mary Biddinger All rights reserved
from Prairie Fever
Steel Toe Books
Reprinted by Verse Daily® with permission

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