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MacQueen’s Quinterly: Knock-your-socks-off Art and Literature
Issue 10: October 2021
Poem: 96 words
By George McDermott


These nightfall shadows erase perspective: 
canyons and mesas look the same. 
I never thought I’d be this old, 
never expected 
	to live in times like these. 

Ahead, a shadow across the horizon 
like a black, devouring mouth from the sky, 
as the sliver of moon sets behind us—
a fragment of gloom 
	between crescent horns, 

older than hope, darker than faith. 
Below, the glint of a gleaner’s scythe 
in the headlights sweeping the darkened roads, 
harvesting minutes, 
	hours, days from the clock. 

I never thought I’d live this long, 
never thought 
	I’d sleep without dreaming. 

George McDermott
Issue 10, October 2021

is a Philadelphia poet who lives in Florida (that’s not impossible, not even particularly uncommon). In other lives, he’s been an English teacher, a speechwriter, and a screenwriter (those are not mutually exclusive, not even especially different). His poetry has appeared or is forthcoming in such journals as Painted Bride Quarterly, Toho Journal, Passengers Journal, The Fourth River, Notre Dame Review, and Coastal Shelf. He is also co-author—with one of his former high school English students—of a nonfiction book about the successes and missteps of public education in the United States.

Author’s website: www.george-mcdermott.com

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