Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Poem: Requisite Breakup Poem #3

Requisite Breakup Poem #3

We travel this highway
as far as our maps will take us
sharing the lead
using each other to block the wind

At night we rest by the orchards
I hike between the rows to pull up mustard
for your windshield
your shadow just above me
in the shape of an owl.

One day we come to a T
you roll down your window and say

I want to go this way
the road is straight and clear
the soil is rich and moist and falls apart in your fingers
there are perfect cows and old trees and graveyards
and there is a town where children play on tire swings
where the motels have ice blue pools and queen size beds
and there is a car wash named the Pearly Gates
I know the owner; I know his son.

And I say
I want to go this way
the road is dusty and hard to follow
there are lightning storms and flash floods
but there are canyons the colors of children’s drawings
and at night the sky is wider than time
On top of a mesa there is a coyote sipping cappuccinos
and we will sit and drink and howl
while dead nameless poets play baseball
on the desert floor
hitting the ball hard, reciting villanelles as they run
to first boulder.

And we look at each other

You wave and turn right
your hatchback slipping away in the flash of morning
a period at the end of a clean gray sentence

I wrap you in tobacco
watch the smoke roll of my windshield
check my gas gauge and
turn left.

First printed in Emily Dickinson Awards Anthology
Photo by MJV 

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