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Guinotte Wise

There’s a weed smells like cat piss in my pasture
Makes me want to pack some things
Head for mountains where the air is sharp
and not return
Until clean cutting cold of razor winter shapes
and purifies and stings tears draws skin tight
and startled deer tremble and dart wide eyed
sailing over fences bouncing like boulders
falling down a hillside

A crane I like and know, lifts and aches into too
thin air, ponderous, finally attains grace
I wish he knew I bring no harm and use
the calories in better ways, he’ll migrate soon
when cooler air swathes the marsh bathing him in
delicious shudders, time to go when winter’s
Kansas wind from Canada with nothing to slow
it between here and there but barbed wire
with a bit of coyote fur attached and fluttering

Nothing makes time flow cascade so fast and
free like something needing paint before
winter and not getting it again and
yet again guilt like a thousand jewish mamas
howl or is that the wind it is the wind
but that weed that smells like cat piss is no
longer causing restlessness, no longer
giving me the move-ons
the faraway call of a train whistle
does that and more.




Guinotte Wise lives on a farm in Resume Speed, Kansas. His short story collection (Night Train, Cold Beer) won publication by a university press and not much acclaim. Three more books since. His wife has an honest job in the city and drives 100 miles a day to keep it.