Chad Foret

“Our boy never
won nothing.” “He
got a Golden Mullet.”
“Shame on a pedestal.
Look, the name’s spelled
wrong.” “No, that’s right—”
“Awards like this were meant for
the saddest sacks.” “—the way it is
spelled. You were at Cooter Brown’s
when he first wept. Traded whiskey for
something fragile as love in your arms.”
“Enough. A good absence breeds room, &
let’s not pretend he didn’t live the hell alone.”

Hours akimbo, he learned to field grounders with
nighthawks, leap from lovechair to ottoman, 
outlasting lava. A clock for company, each
tick an arthritic finger aching through 
abacus. Woke up in an empty house 
grabbing after their ghosts, cursing
arrangements of sound, all turns
that taught him the blues. He
wrecked himself with rodeo 
soul. Stolen four-wheeler 
wishboned a Natchez
light pole. Too damn 
ignorant of anything 
other than dust.
Flames took a 
apart as he
envious of 
all yesterdays.

“Whatever. Here’s five he’s fine,
& another he weaves pain into gold.”


Chad Foret received his M.A. from Southeastern Louisiana University where he edited Manchac Review. His work has appeared in Country Roads magazine, Louisiana Literature, Wisdom Crieth Without, and the anthology Down to the Dark River. He lives in Louisiana with his wife Audrey, where they terrorize pizza together.