by Bill Yarrow
I'm riding on a bus sitting next to a woman eating
a yellow tomato. We both need a bath. Outside the window
is Kansas. Then Nebraska. I note that in my ratty journal,
take a banana from a paper bag, and pretend to shoot myself.
All the reading lights are out: no one can see me.
It's the chilling middle of the night. I hallucinate
my future. I'm a CPA with asthma. I'm a zoologist with
MS. I'm a baby who died of SIDS. The bus pulls into a
rest stop. I buy a grilled cheese, a vanilla shake,
some corn chowder. I covet a pearl-button denim shirt.
In the men's room, I read the offerings on the vending
machines. Two truckers come and go talking of Tupelo.
Stumbling back to my seat, I stare, out a dirty window,
into the sanitary blackness. We're 300 miles from dawn.
All rights reserved.
The poem appears in WRENCH (erbacce-press, 2009) and was reprinted in the Jan/Feb 2011 issue of THIS Literary Magazine.
The poem appears in Pointed Sentences (BlazeVOX, 2012).