first appeared in Tar River Poetry Spring 2010
During dinner my uncle's behind the house
helping a heifer through her first delivery.
Inside, dry turkey, hot dinner rolls.
The heifer's cries bellowing through the house.
Green beans, sweet potatoes, and cornbread
stuffing. All with the tang of
this might be his last.
And who even remembers?
I'm staring out the back window
at the heifer's uterus prolapsed
on the muddy grass.
The vet and my uncle hose it
with peroxide and shove it back
inside like a beating heart into a wine bottle.
The trees haven't even begun to turn,
and my grandfather can still speak.
Knowing we will soon be gone,
he's telling every dirty joke he can remember.
Taylor Collier currently lives in Tallahassee. Work has appeared or is forthcoming in some places like Birdfeast, The Journal of Applied Poetics, The Laurel Review, Nightblock, Rattle, Smartish Pace, Tar River, Zone 3, and others. More poems and writing about poetry at taylorcollier.com.