Nancy Scott


Listen to Audio Version.

He wakes up in a strange bed,
can't remember who he is
or where he's from. Words form
on his brain, sounds ugly
and unnatural escape his lips.

A fiery crash they say.
The rig jackknifed, then flipped
into a ravine, heat so intense,
skin blistered to the touch.
They call him Matthew,

show him snapshots.
He's smiling, his right arm
around a man's shoulders.
Your brother they say.
The house you grew up in.

He shakes his head.
In time they say some things
might come back
He rolls Matthew on his tongue.
It has a strange and bitter taste.


*First published in the author's book, Detours & Diversions (Main Street Rag, 2011).


Nancy Scott is the managing editor of U.S.1 Worksheets, the journal of the U.S.1 Poets' Cooperative in New Jersey. Her poetry has appeared in more than 100 different journals, including Journal of New Jersey Poets, Poet Lore, Witness, Mudfish, The Ledge, Raven Chronicles, Slant and Verse Wisconsin. She is the author of seven books of poetry; her most recent, Running Down Broken Cement, forthcoming from Main Street Rag in September, 2014. She is also an adoptive parent and a former foster parent. Visit her at