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Tuesday, February 12, 2019


by Mara Adamtz Scrupe

                       out beyond the blest kingdom
amongst the trackless traders & slavers & affluent technocrats 
            lands amassing & bomb shelters & clandestine

            airstrips & marble-tombed 
bathrooms & gated havens to get off on        on the other side
of the wall lizards dart in & out or lie in heat benumbed       
            amongst the Burdock catch-spring 
spurred ovate bolls/ reckless rule-less ghost moths skim

&lek/ scroll & whitecap        billow& spray exploding 
in quiver-pleasured olfactory raves & gullies            out beyond

                        the blest kingdom
insect/ amphibian/ mammalian females choose their mates
whilst the males of the species           
entice them uncontested/ none abstain in a homeland       

convinced of its quiddities
            I mark & mind an ancient détente as the eighty richest 
chock-full ride it out from a distance            

it’s a bad bad 
business the way the wall says                       

            inhale/ exhale            expect              nothing

as the dam diggers stem the flood over the faceless fence 

            & the wounded unwing-ed collapse & orange peacock-
eyed butterflies remind me 

            of rope & strand of knot & sign & climb 
& hold on tight           for dear    dear             
at the bottom of this breach 

holed & don’t they know it        up here  though
             on top between squab & hassock 
common six-line racerunner skinks queue a line 
            from my chaise across the porch floor not stiffs

            buried under a dune on the other side of a wall      
but languid/ marking a border
                        they simply                 slip over

Mara Adamitz Scrupe is the author of five poetry collections: BEAST (NFSPS Press, 2014), Sky Pilot (Chapbook, Finishing Line Press, 2012), Magnalia (Chapbook, Eyewear Publications, 2018) and a daughter’s aubade/ sailing out from Sognefjord (winner, Fledge Poetry Competition, Middle Creek Press, 2019). She is the winner of the 2018 Grindstone Literary International Poetry Competition, and the Brighthorse Press Poetry Book Prize for her manuscript in the bare bones house of was which will be published in 2019. Her poems have appeared in international literary journals and magazines and she has won or been shortlisted for the Kay Murphy Poetry Prize, Ron Pretty Poetry Prize, BigCi Environmental Fellowship, Erbacce Prize, Fish Poetry Prize, Aesthetica Creative Writing Award, University of Canberra Vice-Chancellor’s Prize, Bristol Prize, and the National Poetry Society Competition, among others. She divides her time between her farm in Virginia’s Blue Ridge Mountains piedmont and Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, where she is Professor of Fine Arts and Creative Writing at The University of the Arts.