Seeking out sugar but settling for deer shit
my mother leans against the side
of an old Babylonian cigarette machine
purple textiled    palanquined over

then drops down beside me
on the timbered mesa where we huddle
over a vista of primitive cities
and read Keats into each other’s ears

Sensing the watery greens growing restless
Camel    Spirits    Pueblo    Rambler
the desert sits stocked with the same
antique backlit buttons as before

where once we wept all night for the family
just something about the odor of hay

Michael Holmoka

MICHAEL HOLMOKA is the author of Antiquity, winner of the 2015 Kathryn A. Morton Prize in Poetry from Sarabande Books. His poems have appeared in publications such as The New Yorker, Ploughshares, The Threepenny Review, Harvard Review, and Poetry Daily.

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