It Gets Windy in These Parts • Bill Hoagland

Day one: rumble of trucks on the road by the house—
no more than usual, but we notice them more;
the wind pounds an echo in the trees.

Day two: we pick up everything that blew off the porch,
close up sheds again,
I lose my best baseball cap.

Day three: everyone is jittery,
the help at the post office is jittery,
the guys who hang out
in Bill Cody’s Irma Bar are jittery,
even the librarians are jittery.

Day four: you’re mad at me
because you think
I wasn’t paying attention to you,
but hey, layoff, I couldn’t hear you
because of the damn wind.

Day five: somebody across the table
has one of those forced smiles
after she has just picked
a piece of sand out of her teeth.

Day six: there’s a report
up in the canyon
you can just about fly.


Bill Hoagland's poetry has appeared in The 
Denver Quarterly, Nebraska Review, 
Poem, Seneca Review, Writers' Forum, 
South Coast Poetry Journal, The Hollins 
Critic, The Shop and many other journals, 
as well as in the anthologies The Last 
Best Place and Ring of Fire: Writers 
of the Yellowstone Region. He has 
published a chapbook of poems entitled 
Place of Disappearance, and has been 
the recipient of two Wyoming Arts Council 
awards in creative writing—a Fellowship 
in Creative Writing and a Neltje Blanchan 
Nature Writing Award. Originally from 
Illinois, Hoagland holds an MFA from 
the University of Massachusetts and taught 
creative writing and other courses at 
small colleges in Montana and Wyoming 
until his retirement in 2013. Today he 
lives in Cork, Ireland, where he is free t
o write poetry, give occasional readings, 
and think about such things as black holes, 
perpetual motion machines, and beer.