the air burning, acrid billows from backyard pits

the Buffalo River green with fertilizer, ammonia blooms

freon blooms, the sweetgum & apple trees rusting from their petioles

E. coli, measles, stone mounds, crumbling bridges, lost causes

iodine hue of the horizon dappled by chicken houses

deer polyped with tuberculosis, boars crenelated with salt

gas leaking into the karst, the tangled lesions of bone

blistering upon the landscape, red berries

of Nandina domestica, heavenly bamboo, cyaniding the birds from the inside

cedar waxwings, eastern bluebirds, northern mockingbirds, the state bird

the body drained of blood, toxic rain filling in the eyes, the loam

pus in the rice, sputum in the cotton, the moon, the liver shriveling

the streetlights bleaching the stars out out of hope

the field brimming with Arcadia’s premier celebrity resident

C.S. Carrier’s books include After Dayton and Mantle. His poem, “The Natural State,” won the third annual Omnidawn Broadside Contest in 2018. Other poems have appeared in Four Way ReviewQuarterly West, and Whale Road Review. He has an MFA from the University of Massachusetts Amherst and a PhD from the University of Louisiana at Lafayette. He lives in Indianapolis, IN.

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