STATE FLAG By Nicholas Kasimatis


They shot the last grizzly on Mt. Diablo
because somebody said it was there.

Cut off from the salmon.
In a world of no elk.

Watching the marshes drained,
the river made straight.

This is a strawberry.
These are grapes.

That’s the canal,
cutting to Stockton.

The black smoke is oil.
The brown is oak.

Rent a self-driving car
and ride it to the top.

Look out—
a land where all the beasts are gone.

By Nicholas Kasimatis


Nicholas Kasimatis participated in Kim Addonizio’s workshop “Art of the Short Poem.” He graduated from Cal Poly at San Luis Obispo with a bachelor’s degree in architecture and has worked as a construction engineer, gallery attendant, and art director. After the day job and the joys of being a husband and father, Nick spends his time fly-fishing, painting, and writing.

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