CJ Farnsworth is a poet residing in WV and a graduate of the Vermont College of Fine Arts MFA Program. Her poems have appeared or are forthcoming in I-70 Review, Bluestone Review, Backbone Mountain Review, IMPOST, Kenning, Kestrel, Rattle, Mountain Scribes, Women Speak, and others. She is a Pushcart Prize nominee.
They supped the mums
though they are not supposed to
if conventional wisdom is wise at all.
Such are our deer—never satisfied
though the forest is still full and fawning
over their tall tails and storybook spots.
All the same, bring your bunny-mouth
home, dear. Come and press your altricial
whiskers between these hills. Come to hear
how the voices in the leaves hmm don’t leave.
It’s a big whoop. It’s gut fun.
I’ll roll out a kudzu rug and bestow crown
vetch upon your goldenrod.
When you smell smoke, you’ll know you’re close.
I’ll be burning the barn this year
and wearing out my Little Miss Burnt Bridges
pageant sash. The show
is worth the price of admission.
You know what home costs. You’ve worn
the irony of coveralls afar, but you’ve
never held a mighty oak ‘round the trunk
for its fire-devil finale or been milk-nudged
by Bambi tucked under a pine
because our deer do not fear us
much. No, they are nose-poking foragers
who peep in our windows
comparing glut, who eat
our mums not to survive or indulge
Almost everything you need
is here this time of year, festooned
for abuse. Expect weather.
Wear hiking boots.