Current Issue

Spring/Summer 2008

Winter/Spring 2008

Autumn 2007

Summer 2007

Spring 2007

Winter 2007

Autumn 2006

Summer 2006

Spring 2006

Winter 2006

Fall 2005

Summer 2005

Editor's Note


SNR's Writers


Sausage and Eggs
(For Dad)
Wearing the colors of lost sleep,
coffee flow black as enamel, he
entertains sunrise, having beat it
to the punch.
Must’ve been an ornery chickadee
woke him, the morning mist of Marlboro,
lucid pasture whisperings in dreams that
got too real.
The wonderful brevity in this blind
and beautiful light of morning is
the palatable distance covered in a
whitetail’s hurdle.
You lean novice bones into towers of
steam he’s conjured with blazed eyes
of sizzling blue worlds that you won’t see
until years have browned your marrow
in good grease.

Heart Pounded When
I found my birth certificate
up in the musty attic, buried
in a mildewed-Maker’s Mark
box. That strange name was
not mother’s-
someone broke into the house
when I was home alone, I lay
frozen on the sofa in a sea of
panic-soaked tremble, praying
the pitch-black would finally
swallow me-
the moon-blue Pontiac first
took me from that river-valley
farm to my mason brick high
school. Lemon scent danced
in dawn-light-
I drained those two free throws
in the district final with 8 seconds
left on the clock, maybe it was 6-
I forget-
head of woman first found my
my lap. Her mouth opened to
sounds of my stillness. Eyes
rolled back into worlds with
no footing-
your ocean eyes first felt
the world, its distance opened
like a memory you’d known all
along. That red hair blew us
all away-
I slipped on the staircase and
you somersaulted from my grasp
into air open as sky. Roamed your
supple skin for ruptures with my
fingers, felt blind electrocution
as they shook-
these pictures resurfaced today
the way ripples level off and
leave a clear reflection of a face
you’ve worn for ages but see for
the first time.

Spring Awakening
Wouldn’t you be happier somewhere else? Entranced by Poudre Canyon’s rushing creek?
Gripped by that first kiss on Stone-Top Mesa? Green Lake’s shores embracing your feet?
Feel the engine rattle jolt your spine, ether ascend your sinus and breathe on your brain
cells in this 1976 John Deer tractor. Is this where you want to be? Sweat another summer 
away? Are those your father’s hands weathering the grease-dried steering wheel in circles
of dust? How do you love this land more than others, so flat, sentimental as the plow that
rips it open and with so many gods to choose from? If only these gears went to warp
speed-you could be in all those worlds and the work would still get done so that tangled
graves of men you’ve never known, whose veins rivered your blood to seas of plains will
lie content. You could reverse these aging hands.   

Copyright 2008, Rick Marlatt . © This work is protected under the U.S. copyright laws. It may not be reproduced, reprinted, reused, or altered without the expressed written permission of the author.

Rick Marlatt teaches English in Nebraska. He has BAs in English and Philosophy and a MA in Creative Writing from the University of Nebraska, and he’s currently pursuing an MFA in Creative Writing from the University of California Riverside at Palm Desert. Marlatt’s previous publications include Hamilton Stone Review, Blue House, Trillium, Slow Trains, Language and Culture, Events Weekly, The Carillon, The Reynolds Review, Prairie Poetry, The Bumbershoot Annual, and the University of Nebraska Research Journal. Marlatt performs regularly, most recently winning the U of Nebraska Sigma Tau Delta Annual Short Fiction slam this spring.