Tuesday, August 17, 2010


It was was 1984.

Sitting Indian style
atop the
on Mainsteet
in small town

I was popping tar
like bubble wrap,
hundreds of
black circles spanning
out like grease spill blisters
under an August sun.

No shoes,
sweat leaving tracks
like spliced wires
upon my gas can red cheeks
and I was
"finding a 100 dollar bill"
in a world
that was mine, alone,
to explore.

August, 1984 was
sheltered and difficult,
poor and filled with
smile inducing objects
like 25 cent bottles of
Orange Crush soda
and Vacation Bible School
and puppy love and
a sip from Bucky's
beer can and thinking
if I were nice, others
would reciprocate.

The ending of
1984 killed these
blissful moments,
slamming reality
into my core
like ribs into
bicycle handlebars,
knocking the wind
out of my lungs,
leaving me heaped
on the side of
that same road,
like the time
Chucky Bryant
picked me up
after wreck,
before he rode my bike
and a crying,
girl home.

August 1984
and he was
my temporary
in a leap year
filled with pain.

I needed saved then
from that town,
that road,
that life,

My sister,
two years younger,
and I laid on the tracks
one afternoon
listening in unison
for the moaning of steel
on steel, of some distant
heaving locomotive.

We never heard that train,
but I can hear that horn
this evening/
two long, one short, one long/
approaching crossroads,
gates lowered,
lights flashing.

Move back girls,
away from tracks
just enough to feel
the breeze of passing
car upon sunburned skin
in August, 1984.

Captain Crunch,
Captain Caveman,
Oh, Captain, my Captain,
Prince and Purple Rain,
all moved me like
freight cars
on hot tracks
on afternoons
when the world
was still mine
for the exploration
in small town,
August, 1984.

"Never again will you be capable of ordinary human feeling. Everything will be dead inside you. Never again will you be capable of love, or friendship, or joy of living, or laughter, or curiosity, or courage, or integrity. You will be hollow. We shall squeeze you empty and then we shall fill you with ourselves."

Orwellian forecast:

August, 1984.

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