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Richard Luftig



Mud Season


God probably didn’t mean

to create a season between

March and May but there it is—

snow melting to false spring,

gravel drives rutted with puddles

twice as wide as your truck.


Even barns and bales

far from the nearest town

seem to wear their time hard

while left-behind whiskers

of wheat and beard-stubble

corn wait half drowned

in fields to be and plowed.


And up past fence posts,

high in telephone wires,

black grackles and mockingbirds,

impatient for the thick gumbo

of ground that can pull a work boot

clear off an ankle to dry, cry

in every voice imaginable

for unseen mates to return their calls.


Richard Luftig is a past professor of educational psychology and special education at Miami University in Ohio who now resides in California. He is a recipient of the Cincinnati Post-Corbett Foundation Award for Literature and a semi- finalist for the Emily Dickinson Society Award. His poems have appeared in numerous literary journals in the United States and internationally in Japan, Canada, Australia, Europe, Thailand, Hong Kong and India. One of his poems was nominated for the 2012 Pushcart Poetry Prize.