Paulding, Marfa, and Hell

Paulding, Marfa,and Hell

I lost flesh and soul
the night Frank’s dodge
failed on RXR and Helmey-
crossing. Lodged in dirt and rain.
Miles from eyes and voice,
mired in folds of Cyprus limbs
and rud stench of Georgia mud.

Cell near dead, low light
haunts cab as breath sings
in lieu, no, beneath silence.
Ahead, Guyton. Behind, Brooklet.
No gas or repair between.
Black swallows, gorges in taunt
of all guesses, thoughts, hopes.

And there, for no reason
at all, none in the world:a lamp
sways, darts between dark
of myriad branches to tease.
“Car?” Frank says sipping whiskey
from silver flask. “No, its changing
color, red now.” I say as it drifts

in approach, growing bubble-
like above the dead leaves.
“Fuck,” frank says, forcing pedal
to floor. Drops of wet cease
their chorus. Light darkens,
flees from the road through
some unseen path, fades alone

in woods far beyond
our minds. “Saratoga” I whisper
between my teeth, pouring
scotch down my throat, dry.
Frank doesn’t understand, obvious.
There is no knowing, seeing
is all, but sight remains fleeting.

Perhaps, in the end,
the only human wisdom
is silence, and fear.

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