Tag Archives: Matt Schultz

Derelict

By Matt Schultz

On the nights that he had worked past sundown
dad would park his tractor in our driveway.
The loose gravel popped under the weight of its tires
like fat dripping into an open spit; my brother and I
would knowingly spring from the dinner table
while mom pulled a plate from the oven and peeled
back the aluminum foil that clung to the mashed potatoes.

The break lights still shone against our neighbor’s garage 
like the dull bake of a wildfire glowing through smoke and ash
as our fingers tucked into the deep treads of the tractor’s wheels.
We hauled our small bodies up onto the big machine and sat––
side-by-side––in the cool metal bowl of the operator’s seat
tugging at levers that refused to heed our commands. “Be careful,”
dad would suggest on his way to the house, but we couldn’t hear
him over the rumbling auger chewing holes into the Earth. 

The moon glows mellow like a fogged headlamp


Matthew Schultz teaches creative writing at Vassar College. He is the author of two novels: On Coventry and We, The Wanted. His poems have recently appeared in Rust + Moth, Thrush, and Sledgehammer. Matt’s chapbook, Icaros, is forthcoming from ELJ Editions in May 2022. 

Anamnesis

By Matt Schultz

Our stately row of Cypress trees
stand in formation against property line 
and elements: veterans of the frost 
and the scorch. No gust has yet
persuaded these old boughs to drop
the severed limb still hanging there
after all these years. Unrelenting 
clutch that won’t let go––or can’t, 
fearing the compost of forgetfulness.


Matthew Schultz teaches creative writing at Vassar College. He is the author of two novels: On Coventry and We, The Wanted. His poems have recently appeared in Rust + Moth, Thrush, and Sledgehammer. Matt’s chapbook, Icaros, is forthcoming from ELJ Editions in May 2022. 

Stone Walls

By Matt Schultz

Here, along the field’s corrugated ridge and furrow,
the swell and swerve of moss-mortared stack-stones.
Here the Tridentine Mass of farm and pasture:
smallholdings, an economy of butter and beef.

Look how obstinate the rolling rock––
as if some proud gray-green rampart.
Again, wind-split hands uproot granite slabs:
frost and heave, the cursing of Uncle Scratch.


Matthew Schultz teaches creative writing at Vassar College. He is the author of two novels: On Coventry and We, The Wanted. His poems have recently appeared in Rust + Moth, Thrush, and Sledgehammer. Matt’s chapbook, Icaros, is forthcoming from ELJ Editions in May 2022.