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Fickle Muses an online journal of myth and legend

Gong by Steve Cartwright
by Steve Cartwright

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Links for Steve Cartwright

Daphne in the Mining Claims
By Taylor Graham

So the man with hacked-off beard
and braid down his back, and two rough-
looking dogs beside his truck
nods “afternoon” in your direction.

Leave nothing but your foot-tread
on the red clay road, freshly rained
to show imprints of a young doe’s flight.
The woods are full of legend,
gods and men.
    This man’s
been cutting public pine
like he considered it his property.
His kind takes for his own
whatever’s easy.
He’s no Apollo, his dogs not fit
to run a deer, but just to grumble
some old gray bone.

It’s mid-November. Golden as myth,
light falls indiscriminately
on his rusty truck and a nearby
live-oak – as if, with its slick
green leaves, that tree could ever hope
to be a laurel.

Step quick to skirt the ruts
his wheels drag down
to old-time miners’ dirty diggin’s.
As if man became a god
by rearranging scenery.

Previously published in Living with Myth (Rattlesnake Press, 2004)

Read Taylor Graham’s poetry and more at http://somersetsunset.net/Poetry.htm
Order Graham’s poetry chapbook, Living with Myth, from Rattlesnake Press at http://www.rattlesnakepress.com/rattlechaps_chapbook_series.html

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