Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, AFTER THE FALL, by BRUCE WOODS

Poetry Explorer

Classic and Contemporary Poetry

AFTER THE FALL, by                    
First Line: A coolin moose is more than dead
Subject(s): Hunting; Moose; Hunters

A coolin moose is more than dead.
Like new love or revolution, it sets
events in motion. Some things simply
can't be left the way they are.

Unknit from flesh with busy sketches of
blade, the hide, gristle tough, thick
as suburban turf, peels. We slash
gashes in it to grab hold, pull to aching.

The sound of skining is both wet
And brittle. Little clutchings of fat and
Fiber pop and crackle free, snap within
the slow slurp of this rough undress.

And then the boning out. No science to this,
not with biting bugs coming clouds now. We
chop free fists of flesh, then long gourds of it.
Wet meat is all we mean to carry out of here.

Eight loads of it, maybe70 pounds each.
Packframes splay our hipbones, I waddle with
the effort. Finally, through the pain, the mule
mind wakes, shakes its dumb head, goes on.

What we leave behind could have been
a dinosaur; the bristling ridge of a spine, a
ribcage big as a bathtub. White on puddle red,
it is this autumn's Parthenon. One thing done.

Copyright Bruce Woods
Prarie Schooner is a literary quarterly published since 1927 which
publishes original stories, poetry, essays, and reviews. Regularly cited in the
prize journals, the magazine is considered one of the most prestigious of the
campus-based literary journals.

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