This distinguished fellow read from his new collection, "A Shout in the Woods" at the Macon County Library last week. Brent lives in the Cowee Community where he works in forest conservation for The Wilderness Society. This second chapbook, like his first, "Poems from Snow Hill Road" are inspired by the wild lands, the folklore and the history of the region where he lives. He is married to the singer and songwriter, Angelia Faye Martin. The following poem is one of my favorites:
"The Strange Disappearance of Patty Flowers' Wife"
The few still alive from that time
can not remember her name
but agree that she was lost
in the dark forest of Cowee Bald.
nothing for four days but her
and the belly of the mountain beating
against her cold and shivering breast.
When they found her
she was lying on the ground
under a quilt of soil and practicing
the forgotten language of stones,
which she embraced as her own, forever.
It is said she saw a corpse light,
like the one we see across the pasture
every now and then floating about
the empty winter tree tops.
I wake my wife to watch, hold
her hand and wait for darkness
to return the world's cloaked order.
A cold draught prattles about
the night's steadfast audacity.
We can never say a word.