Stephen Scott Whitaker

Stephen Scott Whitaker


Along one river fell
all the luck in the world. A sad town
without a drunk, a sad town droning on
and on as the river grew dirty
with luck. Luck drowned. Luck fell
over short stone fences. Luck fell
over eye. Eye fell up to the table
often, and often the table and drink
gave me the lie. Fuck everything up
in my footpath. In my path? Good as used up
for what worth a drink will do
me. Fuel for casting off of luck. And in casting
off, my feet direct me to sea. To see, of course,
the ocean mind, to see, of course, farther phalaropes
nesting in wild ponds. To sea, of course, Atlantic
and Atlantic and Atlantic. Phalaropes called
through fog. Phalaropes sad
and lowing. Across the marsh
a circling and circling. Fog, phalaropes, luck
falling into the drink. My footpath pulled me
out. My footpath pulled me clean
through the fog of it. On the other side a meadow
deep and full with lupine, wild and rising
up as purple as a king.

STEPHEN SCOTT WHITAKER is a member of the National Book Critics Circle and the managing editor for The Broadkill Review.  Whitaker is a teaching artist with the Virginia Commission for the Arts, an educator, and a grant writer. His poems have appeared in Fourteen Hills, The Shore, Oxford Poetry, Crab Creek Review, The Citron Review, and other journals. He is the author of four chapbooks of poetry and a broadside from Broadsided Press. Mulch, his novel of weird fiction is forthcoming from Montag Press in 2021.

Read more by Stephen Scott Whitaker:

Author’s website
Poem in Revolute
Poem in The Scores
Three poems in Wraparound South (also here and here)