Iowa Writes

R. STEVE BENSON
MIDWESTERN STRETCHES
(after Donald Justice)


Crossing Iowa by Car

The green corn rows
Have been holding their
Arms out
A long time now
To kids
Who will not
Settle here
But pass with
Strange cravings
Eastward to
Where dark towers
Gather about the
Water cooler this
Is Iowa the
Mississippi curves here
Just behind
The open eyes
Of a farmer's
Daughters plowing
In their bikinis

Crossing Iowa by Car

The green corn rows
Have been holding their
Arms out
A long time now
To kids
Who will not
Settle here
But pass with
Strange cravings
Eastward to
Where dark towers
Gather about the
Water cooler this
Is Iowa the
Mississippi curves here
Just behind
The open eyes
Of a farmer's
Daughters plowing
In their bikinis


Poem to Be Read at 3 P.M.
(after Donald Justice)

Including the diner
On the outskirts
The town of Nevada
At 3 P.M.
Was bright but
I sat by a jukebox
While at the counter
My football coach
Gripped a chipped mug
I should have said
Hello but who knew
He'd go home
And jot a note
To his wife & kids
Then kill himself
Not thinking
This poem
Is for him who
Turned the light off

more

About Iowa Writes

Since 2006, Iowa Writes has featured the work of Iowa-identified writers (whether they have Iowa roots or live here now) and work published by Iowa journals and publishers on The Daily Palette. Iowa Writes features poetry, fiction, or nonfiction twice a week on the Palette.

In November of 2008, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) designated Iowa City, Iowa, the world's third City of Literature, making the community part of the UNESCO Creative Cities Network.

Iowa City has joined Edinburgh, Scotland and Melbourne, Australia as UNESCO Cities of Literature.

Find out more about submitting by contacting iowa-writes@uiowa.edu


R. STEVE BENSON

R. Steve Benson is married with 3 children. In 2009 he and his brother Barry published a book of poems, "Schooled Lives: Poems by Two Brothers." The Christian Science Monitor has published 20 of his poems and others have appeared in NAR, MARGIE, Hollins Critic, Wisconsin Review, Poet Lore, Spoon River Poetry Review, Briar Cliff Review, Slant, Poem and others.

This page was first displayed
on January 28, 2011

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