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Bennett Huffman, 2/15/2010

Current Occupation: Entomologist
Former Occupation: English Professor
Contact Information: Bennett Tracy Huffman received his BA in English from the University of Redlands. After a circumnavigation of the globe he received his MFA in creative writing from the University of Oregon, where he co-authored the novel Caverns (New York: Penguin, 1990) with Ken Kesey. Bennett earned his PhD in 20th Century Literature from the University of Liverpool in 2001. He has had poems published in Northwest Passage, Ambit, and Calapooia Collage, among others. For many years Bennett taught college English in America and Britain. Bennett currently guards the state of Oregon against invasive insect species with the State Department of Agriculture.

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Faces

We stare at the people driving by.
It doesn’t matter who they are;

If they’re an Hispanic field worker
driving his old turquoise Ford;

or the one armed Veteran on his way home
from a stop-over at the Palace for pool,
laying the bridge out everytime
before laying out a shot,
and beer after work in the mill.

Our faces are blank, and our shadows jump
across the buildings’ bricks as a gaggle of geese
break up the very last orange of a winter sunset.

“Are they headed north or south?”
Julio asks, clomping along
in his black boots.

“Who cares?” I say.
And as their honking disappears,
the first croakings of this year’s frogs
take their place in my heart;

remembering what it once meant
to lie in the grass in the rain.

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