Dave Martin, “The Deer”

orange line

The Deer

Somewhere, my apartment turns
into a forest fire. The birds
have all left us behind, and I can’t tell

if I’m buried or opening a door,
or if it’s just not enough water, but

inside I’m screaming. I go in the kitchen
and get the bread out on the counter.
I get out the meat and the mustard.

There are still deer outside, melting
into pools of charred earth.

I get myself out on the patio, away from your singing.
I chew up the bread, meat, and mustard,
and swallow it all down with beer.

A one-hundred-foot smoldering pine folds
and drives its head into the roof, and the windows explode.
I don’t know where you are,

but it sounds like a river is dying.


Dave Martin is an MFA candidate at Western Michigan University in Kalamazoo, MI, where he works as assistant director for the Writing Center and serves in various editorial capacities for Comparative Drama, Third Coast, and New issues Press. He lives in Kalamazoo with his son and two cats. His poetry can be found in Hear Here, Two Cities Review, and Fourteen Hills.


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