Poem by 2013 Augury Finalist Travis Macdonald

Photo by Dave Bledsoe, FreeVerse Photography

How To Keep Clean When The World Around You Is Going To Shit

by Travis Macdonald

Spoiler alert: there’s no secret meaning asleep beneath
every single love story. The human mouth contains
about 20 billion bacterium breeding
endlessly. Generations live and die in the grip
of your indigenous indigestion. Meanwhile we are still

killing the buffalo but with birth control
darts and BBQ sauce instead of bullets. Same dark hunger, different
villains in the seed vault stealing meals. It doesn’t take

Monsanto stock or an advanced degree to see we’re sinking in
iceberg sweat and high-speed propaganda bandwidths. You can get a PhD in pretty
much anything. Adieu

to you, dear country club bar mitzvah season. We miss
your microbe exchange rate slow dance doubling. With every chaperone slap

the effects of your affection hardened
into hidden tissues and hand-me-down zippers. Overstimulated
economic indicators of the apocalypse beware: This is the moment
where we begin to build our intimacy into a big brand name.


Travis Macdonald is a copywriter by day, editor by night and a poet in between. He is the author of two full-length collections (The O Mission Repo [vol. 1] and N7ostradamus) as well as several chapbooks. With his wife, JenMarie Macdonald, he publishes Fact-Simile Editions, a micropress dedicated to the creation of handmade contemporary poetic artifacts from recycled or reclaimed materials.