from Vol. 45.4 - of memory, Summer 2018
I am imagining your hands
thick fingers curled inwards
clutching an entropied globe.
You watch the flickering flat speeches and you nod your
wide head believing you can think for yourself and by God
they are telling you what you already know.
What you’ve known your whole life.
Because haven’t you worked your ass off since you could bloody walk? Almost
died once, run over by an air seeder. The tire, as tall as a small man and twenty
times his weight somehow skipped your spine and heart.
You watched the pale sky’s edges press out
viscous fluid gathering, pushing behind your eyes as your body was crushed
deep into the earth and just in time the wheel made its
slow rotation over to the other side.
Your spirit almost flew up. Large fingers and thumb this close together
in front of my face. So I would understand.
Perspective is everything.
No tears no rage can change the setting
of your kaleidoscope.
Tiny black and grey stones clack against one another
and through a remote square prism you view the cattle cars filing past
filled with ghosts
and you think this fine, this is probably alright.
They couldn’t have deafened their ears or bent their backs
breaking the earth for their families
they couldn’t have understood real pain
Try walking on an oil rig site with a broken foot all day. There were no
benefits, no compensation. No one to call. No one to save you.
You had a family to feed. You broke your foot at the beginning of the shift and you
worked on into the night.
You say we don’t understand the sheer glory of suffering
for reward, for family, for community.
This is what life is all about.
Your perpetual echo reverberates then finally
quiet. Your eye presses against the lens, tightly.
Small stones disperse and drop, clack and scatter.
Scatter and disperse. Thick fingers turn the chamber and
slowly, the train trundles down the line.