After Sunset by Ronald Stottlemyer

Eventually I find the shovel
upright in the blackened pile
of compost behind the garage.
It’s hard to see in this light,
but everything looks much as
I left it last fall–shriveled ears
of orange peel, a few egg shell
fingernails, corncobs sticking up
like bones in an ancient grave.
As I turn the mound over
a couple of turns for good
measure, the moon breaks out
of a heavy cloud and brightens
momentarily with a grisly smile.
The dark goes on rising up
around me, turning everything
under like the swell you never
hear coming up behind you.

Ronald Stottlemyer
Ron Stottlemyer lives in Helena, MT. After a long career of teaching and scholarship at colleges and universities, he is returning to his love of writing poetry. His work has appeared in a variety of journals around the country. Recently, his poem Falling was awarded a Pushcart Prize and will appear in the 2020 volume of Pushcart winners.

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