or driving

Originally published in Bombay Gin #28
Naropa Press 2002

I used to love to read this out loud; it was one of few times when I felt poignant and certain, even rhythmic, in front of a page. There was a 16-hour drive from Boulder to Chicago which consisted of a single flat line punctured by small white dashes. I began to consider my thoughts in terms of those lines, and the road, and the way I would follow them forward, coming or going, between cities, lost in other moments, then back to the lines, then the road, then other moments. Our destinations are composed of such lines, inside many other such road-like lines, inside many other such road-like moments, between two cities. Now I read this piece–always out loud and sometimes while driving–and discover a simpler me.

or driving.

and how to reach there from here or should i say here from there because the other again always circumventing itself, the question. multi-planed like dry layered clouds the kind that hide or take the form of when the light is right and besides that. this yes is line, linear but one line of many like driving.

not looking at him, he at me and massaging his own hands looking at his nails no book no paper no pen does he think they wait on you here in the background sound. washing serving dropping sorting and distinction between this and customers sip pause sip pause delicate placement of coffee by means of clear handled mugs on the table on the hand that says People Helping People with the Helping now covered of course and somehow.

all this uninteresting and yet still required because every moment cannot be so profound although. set up life we do like a stage so it can happen like it plays out in our mind like we wrote in memory then a combination of the inside and. all this because i was at the end of the hour of the sentence and you at the beginning the front and back of never merging.

getting up now to pee leaving bag on the table in chicago i would classify these people as seedy watch my back but here for some reason here i leave my stuff money papers soul bike pump tool kit pen all the necessities amenities to keep me independent because.

running you decided you wanted to be a runner again because you love it not because of skinny legs red skin sweat time him but falling asleep tired in an orange shirt under the cottonwood knowing what your legs feel like and suddenly you started dreaming. are so sure the duality is will ever be but still needs such constant reaffirmation again. again. the cigarettes move in an image of not him what was that line from an old journal on the other side of the hour the edge of the stage and all those lines.

and all the times i was lost. look back and wonder how i ever accomplished anything at all writing showing up for work learning to dance falling in love or rather causing him to fall in love with me too first or last in the same hour what is really incomprehensible but looking back i.

even though the question was never really answered or asked thought of another is all at least you’re reassured some part of you knows and it’s that part that refuses to be silenced so. looking up out the window a cold dusk or step after winter gray but inviting and lights strung out on trees across vine covered fences somehow reminds. even though the weather there was so different so humid still and lately longing thinking remembering and so much so very much happens in one year but to pin it all in order or if.

heaviness hangs like a hook or the front door concentrates in bladder cold settling but last year the first sign of fall was bare feet on wood floors in. almost never comprehensive or chronological order linear why is time if thought piled on top itself consecutive only to the order of importance or cohesion or. no instance alone.

white polish french dutch irish runner smoker what am i found lost to me to him to that time in fools canyon coyote gulch muleshoe. edmonton Eunice el centro el gulfo flagstaff athabaska sedona chicago the atlantic tough in maine boston monroe kissed the guy from Ireland in the airport not the kiss but his accent kept me mesmerized his voice on the phone for months after pinacate roselle sioux city college ave hopi res bookstore flower farm anchorage thanksgiving eating thai and a dozen empty glasses of coke his hat backwards and two straws in his teeth pretending he’s josh lake ponchartrain and only four days in one place and it was like home to return to it profound cow in the mist like it had been there for eternity highway and tenley blue bandana always rice and or beans grilled cheese fried eggs fennel soup potatoes biscuits georgia’s were best but now.


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