Brent Fisk

What We Take Apart When No One’s Looking

August of the wild fence row, kicked-up broken glass.
I tore through remnant tiger lilies and dead sparrows,
flattened shotgun shells pocked by gravel, tickseed hidden in a hiss of grass.
Disassembled walls clunked stone by stone into the belly of a rusted barrow.
Summer of the busted knuckle, the hard-earned easy cash,
the blackened thumbnail and a stash of Playboy’s rain-marred beauties,
and orphaned cans of beer. Summer of the whitewashed sky,
the waylaid hour, the twitch of a deer’s flank at the edge of a field.

I took apart the lawnmower until my whole life stank of gas-soaked rags.
I drowned out the warblers with a louder song, broke the bones in one soft hand.
I learned the itch is God’s most hellish punishment. I ditched the cast,
unsigned, too pure and lonely for a pen.
That whole July and most of August no one spoke my name.
I thumbed a ride to Georgia when the heat dragged down the moon.
I tell myself I wouldn’t change a thing.

Brent Fisk is a writer from Bowling Green, Kentucky, with over 300 poems, essays and short stories published so far. He has an BA in English Literature, and an MA in Creative Writing, both from Western Kentucky University.