Fall 2009 • Vol. XXXI No. 4 PoetryOctober 1, 2009 |

Wreck

The boy who is not yet a man is walking slowly,    almost trudging across the sludgy ground       toward the machinery shed       where his father is welding. The boy who is not yet a man will become a man of few words,    but now is searching, is scanning all the words       he knows, and all the ways       he knows of planting them in sentences. The boy who is not yet a man realizes that his face,    the expression he will try to hide, will      nonetheless be like a novel,      a portrait painting, a police report. The boy who is not yet a man replays the moment over    and over in his head, projecting it large      in his mind's eye so that he might      understand, better explain how it happened. The boy who is not yet a man can see the tractor    rear up on its hind legs, frothing at the jaws,     and writhe before dropping dead. He can

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John Kinsella
John Kinsella's recent books of poetry include Firebreaks (WW Norton, 2016), Jam Tree Gully (WW Norton, 2012) which won the Australian Prime Minister's Award for Poetry and the Judith Wright Calanthe Award, and Sack (Picador, UK, 2014). He is an Extraordinary Fellow of Churchill College, Cambridge University and Professor of Literature and Environment at Curtin University.

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The Way of the Red Flag

By John Kinsella

The boy who is not yet a man is walking slowly,    almost trudging across the sludgy ground       toward the machinery shed       where his father is welding. The boy who is […]

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