Citing Louis Bromfield in October

by Abby Parcell


Citing Louis Bromfield in October


I recognize the cold scent of morning,

but the smoldering mountains don’t suit

my definition of the season:

I want to see the pin oaks blaze

against miles of Iowa sky.


Some forgotten Bromfield novel says

that midwestern hearts are caught

between a rough-hewn home

and history an ocean away.

They outgrow the quiet of native fields,

and leave the prairie in search of any frontier.


I can feel that separation.

My heart no longer belongs to the center.

But the pattern of bales and barns,

the wide night sky on fire,

answers the ache for autumn.


Abby Parcell is a nonprofit professional working to improve economic mobility in the South. Her work has been recently published in Exponent II. I live in Chapel Hill, NC.


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