Along the road
dawn pushes
through the orchard
barns fade red
through crooks of oak
An old man dawdles
in turnips forgetting his age
A cauldron sun nets the far hills
where vineyards roll down
into the machinery of earth
and night endures tireless faces
heated under the dead lake
of an enameled moon

Spiders weave webs
among the small fortunes of flowers
thinning the unsettled hills of suburbia
eating the dust of heaven
in corners that go nowhere
Under the city’s cinematic skies
rackets of labor drum
in a sandstone dusk
cold washes of beer
harbor the air of swamp coolers
Men line boulevards
lowering their hats and hands
like secret agents
Trees talk to air
and children wave ragged coats
to ships that go by
pulling the horizon behind them

Without hesitation something visible
shatters to the floor like a truth
waiting to be picked up and eaten
I imagine a wife
small farm
a cow full of milk
all day in the field
in the hive where a queen
in triumph directs the wind
pouring in overhead

Clouds edge the world
Birds on imaginary winds
with some vague urgency
of direction press forward
into rhythms of boredom
Their wings refuse to move
and the clock’s silence
is a white tablet hidden
beneath punctual tongues
Leaving this wonderland
is so hard
I lose everything
to dark bags of crows
trailing behind me
and their dreams are not
strong enough to endure
the distance between
breath and departure

Every passage is fossilized
Squalls of light perch like small packages
on a winter clothesline with bitter tongues
The shape of things to come
twists in the wind like a hanged man
Wearing through what I can not wee
each day dissolves
into fragments upon a butcher’s block
dragging me into its trance

I begin work
my terrors knotted
around my neck
like conquests
The road that has dragged me
this far still has my grin
on the bottom of its shoe
I collapse
like a puzzle
to fitted anyway
I choose.