Suzanne Frischkorn

Backcountry

The shooter was white.

We live in a verdant forest,
   twenty minutes from everything.
Summer’s leaves screen the road,
every sunrise caught and cradled

in branches, our perimeter lined
with stacked stoned walls.
   When it all finally goes to shit
that’s something, anyway—

   not being an easy target.
The shooter was a loner.
The shooter didn’t talk to anyone.

He was in his 20s, wrote a manifesto,
   streamed his shooting live.
His mother bought the guns.
He graduated from the high school.

   No one would fuck him.
No one raised him that way.
No one followed up.
No one can believe it happened,
they never thought

   it would happen here.

At the carnival, the strangest of places
to escape news, colored lights corral
the dusk. Dark clouds speed toward us,
lightning flickers sky, we gather

   our children and drive home.


Suzanne Frischkorn is the author of Lit Windowpane (2008), Girl on a Bridge, (2010) and five chapbooks.  Her poems have appeared in Copper Nickel, Diode, Ecotone, Indiana Review, Puerto del Sol, Verse Daily and elsewhere. She is the recipient of the Aldrich Poetry Award for her chapbook Spring Tide, selected by Mary Oliver,  an Emerging Writers Fellowship from the Writer’s Center for her book Lit Windowpane, and an Individual Artist Fellowship from the Connecticut Commission on Culture and Tourism.

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