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4 Poems by Nathan Hauke

Falling is all edges

The sensation of falling

Mute in the grass—

Thoreau: Nothing in nature makes noise.

Abandoned chicken house in the holler
so contaminated it would have to be burned; then, buried.
Instead, just sits there since the early eighties.
Sweet clover and wild carrot along the road, honeysuckle.
No one says you’re healed, but you want to be.
Addiction cleaves to the few twigs
broken off, floating downstream

Family garden across the river from where we sit
with coffee cups full of whiskey

A piece of string in the leaves

Green leak of treatment out of the softening boards
Buoy made from an empty bottle of detergent
Rough strip of moonlight pasted over the end of the dock
Surface tension of the face in the mirror
as you close the medicine cabinet
:: Turn towards the one you love
Before morning light turns your eyes into ash

After the parade,

Hank Williams (“I Saw the Light”).
Fiddle stomping goddamn joyful oil spill.
Song about The Civil War, Sun Drop Cola,
“Go seek some happy Northern girl
for to be your wife.” Chorus: “Three cheers
for the Southern girls and the boys they threw away.
Rangy jack pines homesick for your laugh.
Little girl in orange chasing a rabbit across the grass
calls the rabbit by name, but I can’t hear it.

Song for the river Jordan: “Some of these days/ hallelujah.
I’m going to sit down by my Jesus.”


        Loose black sheet plastic
Flapping beneath Aspen little white flowers wasted in extravagance
Pink threads of cloud wasted in broken glass bottleneck
The sweet smell of bread in the air
From the Wonderbread factory the way Thoreau would put his ear
up against the telegraph pole

Nathan Hauke was born and raised in rural Michigan. His first book, In the Marble of Your Animal Eyes, is forthcoming from Publication Studio. He is also the author of chapbooks: Honeybabe, Don’t Leave Me Now (forthcoming from Horse Less Press), S E W N (Horse Less Press 2011), and In the Living Room (Lame House Press 2010). His poetry has most recently been published in American Letters & Commentary, Dusie, Peaches and Bats, Real Poetik, Spittoon, Typo, and We Are So Happy To Know Something. Two of his poems, “Deerfield (1)” and “A Surface. A Shore or Semi-transparency of Glass,” were selected to be a part of The Arcadia Project Anthology that GC Waldrep and Joshua Corey are editing for Ahsahta Press (forthcoming 2012). He co-edits Ark Press with Kirsten Jorgenson.