Williamson_Review
Reviews

Poetry in Ploughing

Totally innocent of the myth of progress and the scandal of death and failure that account for modern sentimentality in its most wrongheaded and obnoxious form, Set the Ploughshare Deep is as realistic a work as a novel by Thomas Hardy or the Old Testament.

Tractor and combine axle-deep in
muck,

seedcorn and soybeans frozen in
the field,

the home farm pledged against a
bumper yield,

he has run out of money, time and
luck.


What would his frugal Swedish
forebears think

to see their hard-won holdings on
the block?

There is no solace for a laughing-
stock

in woman's arms, religion or strong
drink.


Any day now the banker will fore-
close,

summon the sheriff and the auc-
tioneers.

What will he tell his sons in twenty
years?

He cannot wholly blame the early
snows.

        ("The Failure")

In...

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