WPN is hopping South over the border this week to share with you three poems from C. S. Fuqua from Las Cruces, New Mexico. At once both visual and conversational, these pieces leave a lasting image on the mind.
The old man’s on the bank,
rifle ready to pluck off any head
foolish enough to break surface.
I don’t believe a word of it,
All this about the world heating up—
Just normal cycle of things.
It’s all happened before.
Read the bible and you’ll see.
He spits, scans the water.
I ask him about the frogs
that glutted this pond
when I was a boy.
Just faded away, he says.
Probably farm poisons.
He’s silent for several long moments.
Finally, he clears his throat, says,
If this old world’s warming,
then it’s the fault of science.
That’s what gave us the means,
and that’s what can give us the remedy.
Water stirs, and a turtle’s head rises.
The old man levels the rifle, fires,
and the head explodes.
I ask, Why’d he surface?
Faith or calculated risk?
The old man chuckles,
still scanning the pond’s surface.
Damn thing was just stupid.
You don’t know,
but someone’s tryin’ to drive me to the nuthouse—
put the bankruptcy papers in photo albums,
pictures where the papers should’ve been,
took money and brought it back…
At least they can’t see in now.
You just don’t know.
Taking cue from Asian monks,
some scientists assert reality
is nothing more than perception,
but to what degree,
does tinfoil reflect truth
and conceal deceit?
At dusk, she stands in the old trailer’s doorway,
glaring out at the new trailer,
set up two years ago thirty yards away
She moved her belongings back into the old one today,
and now she’s waiting for collection calls
she won’t answer.
When her son asked about the foil on the windows
and the multiple locks on the doors,
she demanded to know why he thought she was nuts.
A crow caws somewhere in the woods,
and she feels giddy.
That will change
with each day and
each new decision.
Three distinct poems, three distinct characters effectively captured with clear and concise verse. The people and scenery which populate Fuqua’s poems are unique, both humorous and deeply moving, and each piece offers a snapshot of their lives which is a pleasure to experience.
Come back and visit us next week for more exciting new work!