PoetryIssue 16 | October 2012

Two poems by M.R. Smith

Lick Creek Cow Camp

We find senior rights to good water here hard
against the late summer sluice of Lick Creek.

We drag our campers up past the O-X and over the good
wood bridge on the forest road to the far bank

and let the dog scatter the free range cows. They shade up
under the old growth firs and stare balefully

at their usual watering hole. There is some traffic
on the forest service roads from a few hunting scouts

riding ATVs or motorbikes, and a few more white pickups
like ours, but mostly we get the sound of the creek

over a shallow falls. There are two days until September,
and less than thirty until the understory has the red blush

of the knowledge of impending doom. There is not a single
cloud to cut the blue, and only the low of cows cut off.


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About the author

Mark’s work is published in Camas, Cascadia Review, Red River Review, and elsewhere. He travels extensively in the Pacific Northwest and leaves soon for a multi-week wander through Idaho, Montana and Wyoming. He never manages to catch any fish but would release them if he did.

Read our current issue:


Two poems by Anne Babson
Vignette, Townhouse, 9 a.m. by Troy Cunio
Night Becomes Day Over the West by Megan Foley
Yukon River Aurora by D. B. Goman
Two Poems by David Havird
Cretan Love Letter by Emily Linstrom
Holland by Rick Mullin
Fear in Kenya by Kristina Pfleegor
The Lounge Lizard by Ed Shacklee
Two Poems by Sarah J. Sloat
Night Flight by Vicki Stannard
Koinonia Farms by Alina Stefanescu
Thessaloniki, Four a.m. by Anastasia Vassos
Imaginary Oceans by Jason Warren
Two Poems by F. J. Williams

Postcard prose

It’s Salty by Kelly Hill

Travel notes

Anchorage in the Great Land by Karen Benning
The Value of Small Money by Megan Hallinan
Screensaver by Sandra Larson
Thirty Cents by Tommy McAree
Gokarna by Kate McCahill
Going Places by Rachel Miller-Howard
Susanville CA: Notes From The Road by Susan Volchok