Bandon Oregon, Ubi Sunt
The Belgian Malinois on the marijuana farm
has killed four of the sheep. Another sheep
(dead from exposure) decomposes in the far
pasture. Pulling sea grass up from off-season
cranberry bogs, I think about the boy who
was given this farm by his parents, his fancy
extendable chainsaw stuck deep on some
bough. Tools, new last season, rust in piles
of sand. The boy is twenty-nine. His lady,
a recent alumnus of Bandon High, cooks
mutton for us every night. They had a girl
from Yale out here; said she licked her plate
like a dog. I don’t see why that’s disparate
or offensive. We drove up Elk River to take
pictures of opal water cresting into rapids.
I didn’t bring anyone with me. I didn’t ask
anyone. Nobody I know would’ve come.
Nate Duke was born in Arkansas. His work is forthcoming in Granta, Colorado Review, Southern Humanities Review, the Arkansas International, and has appeared elsewhere. He is currently a PhD student at Florida State University.