In Germany on June 17, 2009 at 12:00 am


Late at night

no cab will carry me

for any price,

so my street-burned feet

must serve as wheelbarrows,

hauling me past

half-timbered ranks

and bludgeoned stone walls

that once hugged tight

the town.


Ponds of street lights

leapfrog me along the road,

which dips into

a geologic bowl

of blackness—

the only sounds

are moaning trucks

and trickling from

a gnomish creek

that slithers from shadow

to shadow.


My road is a chasm

wedged along the hillside,

guiding me past farmhouse,

trailer, trees as old as night.


An East German blackbird

hangs loose

from a farmer’s

middle finger flagpole.

Black humps of sheep

mingle in the crunching grass.


Now, high enough to see

the crown of lights

beyond staccato clouds of breath—

the town is far,

orchards embrace,

and I am near enough

to my pension-house

to remember

that a pillow

is bequeathed

to marry

my dusk-chilled face.


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