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poet

Spencer Reece

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Spencer Reece

Spencer Reece is the author of The Road to Emmaus (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2014). He is the national secretary for the Bishop of the Episcopal Church in Madrid, Spain.

by this poet

poem

After my mother and father fight, my father takes my hand and we walk down to the Mississippi where he smokes Camel cigarettes. He flicks his ashes away from me. He rarely says my name. All day on TV, I watch monks in Saigon douse themselves in gasoline and light their saffron robes on fire. When they ignite, they

poem

              Still singing in my cell
of succulents, staked by a man
who fled. Nothing personal.
How often I get that wrong…
I move on—

              some man
is always fleeing, and that
is never personal. The longer
I go the fewer notes I need. 
My torso a sort of

2
poem
I was a full-time house sitter. I had no title.
I lived in a farmhouse, on a small hill,
surrounded by 100 acres. All was still.
The fields were in a government program
that paid farmers to abandon them. Perfect.

I overlooked Union Lake, a small lake,
with a small ugly island in the middle--
a sort of mistake,