Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Lone Pine Cafe

"Those in the know can leapfrog to the naming of parts."

One American dies, mean,
Every ten to twelve seconds.
Somehow, that seems low to me,
But I blame the media.
I am an American,
After all. I rode shotgun
In a Westy van driven

By my stepfather-in-law
While my mother-in-law dozed,
Prone, snoring, and unbelted
On the mattress in the back.
She had called him a liar
When he claimed the van couldn't
Reach interstate speeds, wanting

In his subtle way to take
The back roads through Idaho,
Past the Nez Perce surrender,
The salmon-free salmon town,
Into the vague forever
That had become what was left.
Left, left, I said, take the next.

He did, not wanting insults
About his veracity
To betray his confusion.
We passed a bad accident.
Another American
Thrown from his pickup truck, dead,
Outside the Lone Pine Cafe.

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