top of page

The Field of False Horizons

For the Mima Mounds

Not that they're lying to you, but they are lying

like a game of checkers gone to seed.

For explaining this fraying away

of land at countless knees, the reasons

are mere pretense to the possible: their recline

is decline from once-named causes. Remember

as they do the earth in seizure and you

might bolt up like a blister. Or instead, recollect

the glacier's plod, dragging its feet

cubed of silts and stones. A new skin

of rain buries the mark

made by a wide flight of fire. Someone leaving

someone set to skipping stones, but the creek dried up,

then everything dried up. What was left was settled

around what could still stand

to be touched. No more

or less majestic in effusions,

forgive us, then, the flatness of our lives.


JAY YENCICH has published poems and reviews in venues such as Best New Poets 2021, Mantis, Pleiades, Poetry Northwest, and The Seattle Review. He earned his MFA from the University of Washington, where he received the Academy of American Poets Prize, and is presently a PhD candidate at the University of Illinois at Chicago, where he studies Old English, early modern British literature, and ecopoetics.


bottom of page