Friday, June 24, 2016

Portrait of the Artist at Age 24, Iowa City

It was one thing, all the deadlines on green screens....
But this? No shores, no mooring, not even a job!
And just a Gideon Bible in his back pocket and a pride
to gaze from one end of Ioway to the other and make
of it a heaven. Soon enough he cast even vision away
for the rippled heat above a switchyard that reminded him
how hard he carried home. For all he knew he'd lug it
past Montana to the Pacific where he'd sing whales
out of their own song-filled deep. Okay. He never ditched
the pride. And as for his songs, well, screw you
if they didn't make sense. Yes, there was patient Jennifer
with her ancient violin and her bathrobe at breakfast.
And Haley later that July 4th. He stared into a web of sparks.
Who knows when he stopped? But if he left his loves cold,
it was as Haley told him: He was trying to eff the ineffible.

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