A landscape can go woozy with neglect. Barns slump over, ball gowns absent the bride, sheltered by sand pines too bored to be rabid. The horizon hosts a bare-bones picnic, a muddle of broad, brown cloth, weeds lashing at the leftovers, hillsides picked over for gold and all the trimmings, oil and ore and more. A dribble of river drifts the fish to no-man’s land, no hooks, no nets to heave home. It longs for strict scaffolding, a deep cut of canyon where it might finally be whittled to fine white surge, a rival for the trains that blow open the dark, sweeping doors from their moorings, shingles quaking over church bells whose silver tongues rustle apart a town made of paper, streets sifting on fractured ice. Frigid wasps muddle the windowsill, dazed as they try to probe their way into a house that gasps and hangs like a husk, a hollow breast in a famished hand.
Leslee Rene Wright lives and teaches in Denver, Colorado, but spent several years in the heart of Nebraska. Her poems and stories have appeared in Necessary Fiction, A Clean, Well-Lighted Place, Prick of the Spindle, Crab Creek Review, Painted Bride Quarterly, and others.