Martin Ott

is the author of nine books of poetry and fiction, including Underdays (University of Notre Dame Press, 2015), Sandeen Prize Winner and Forward Indies Finalist and his newest book Fake News Poem (BlazeVOX Books, 2019). His work has appeared in twenty anthologies and more than two hundred magazines.

Nobody Knows Why Thousands Of Skittles Were On Their Way To Feed Wisconsin Cows

Where were you when the Skittles flowed like a sacred
             river on the highway, the red states hemorrhaging
                          across the plains, the corporation that manufactured

                          the candy unaware of how defective merchandise
             without the letter ā€œSā€ was shipped to feed Wisconsin
cattle, only candy the color of blood, sweet as kisses

blown from politicians? The secret to our hamburgers
             finally revealed: feeding cows corn syrup is cheaper
                          than corn itself. The blacktop roils in beads that hang on

                          the neck of lake country, internecine symbols cutting
             through valleys and springs, an entire nation quivering
like cows shaking for a sugar fix, starving for rainbow.