Ode to Scrapple

Its name is what was left

when all the better words

were taken for other things.

Here there’s title and history,

will to stake a claim

in one word. Scrapple.

I rise early, before the sun

and daughters, before the dog

stretches his old bones

across the door jam

to pee in the dark,

because the economy of dawn

is momentary and true.

The night’s crumbs tumbling

into the morning’s expectant wag,

and in that crossroad moment

when things become only present,

before either shadow or light

lay claim, I look for compass points

toward the day, plan the route.

Scrapple knows where it comes from

and doesn’t mind, wastes nothing

and still keeps it together,

not like me, moving through

the years like a traveler

dropping excess kit

along the trail as the day

heats up.

Let’s get righteous about waste,

about taking up what others leave behind.

We build new cities

on the broken walls of the conquered.

We raise our children in the light

of things we’ve lost,

and still we bury

our dead in green fields.

So dawn I fry the offal, a ponhoss

of cornmeal and pork bones

in butter with eggs,

the dog sniffing around the floor

for bits I’ve forgotten.

Grant Clauser is the author of two poetry books, Necessary Myths (Broadkill River Press 2013) and The Trouble with Rivers(Foothills Publishing 2012). Poems have appeared in The American Poetry Review, Cheat River Review, The Good Men Project,Mason’s Road, Painted Bride Quarterly, Seattle Review and others. He also writes about electronics, teaches poetry at random places and chases trout with a stick. Grant’s blog is www.uniambic.com