S. Thomas Summers
is a teacher of Writing and Literature at Wayne Hills High School in Wayne, New Jersey. He is the author of two poetry chapbooks: Death settled well (Shadows Ink Publications, 2006) and Rather, It Should Shine (Pudding House Press, 2007).
His poems have appeared in several literary journals and reviews, among them The English Journal, MiPo, 2River View, The Pedestal Magazine and The Loch Raven Review. Summers also leads workshops for high school and middle school English teachers.
He lives in northern New Jersey with his wife and children.
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have been written about frogs—
a horde hopping across a dark
street, headlights spearing
each languid eye—
a fat Buddha humped
on a swamp log bellowing
the essence of loneliness—
so this one, about the frog I
just quartered with the mower,
its life smeared upon the green
grass bold as a Christmas
ribbon, will be brief.
[Originally published in the chapbook Death settled well (Shadows Ink Publications, 2006.]
hen I was in high school, I considered poems chunks of concrete that burdened my backpack and robbed me of time...teachers actually expected me to read them. Find an anthology of Romantic poetry. Take a look a Wordsworth’s Composed a Few Miles Above Tintern Abbey. It sits on the page like a brick—a brick that once bruised this poor student.
Yes, I’ve grown to appreciate all poetry, but I truly didn’t yearn for it until my freshman year of college. William Paterson University professor Phillip Cioffari was my Creative Writing I instructor. On the first day of class, he shared with me James Wright’s Small Frogs Killed on the Highway. I was stunned. It was short—easy to comprehend. It was about frogs. It was tangible. I could feel it. I was able to possess it. It inspired me to write my first poem, a poem that reflects my simple mind; yet, a poem that made poetry mine.