Trees on Fields

by Zach Dodson

Dear Jackknife Ponderosa,


I'm stupid. Let's move on. Let's move past the part where I complain, where I struggle with circumstance, where I display my petty arms, and shoot holes in the air.

            Now that we're standing here on the X I can see how wrong this map is. I can see how there's bear where there shouldn't be bear. Creeks in the walls. Wolves all through them. The flash on the backs of their eyes, right down the throat of the prey of the day. The Twins again. I'm writing this on a roof. I'm mailing it in the morning. Can you fucking see it coming?

            The Twins, like a jumble of cranes, all arching over the other's shoulder. While I now fumble in the dark, fingering the flat flat. Imaging everything exactly the way it is. Stupid magic.

            They watch the show, and I watch them. I am the show, and they watch each other, wildcats again. See how life-like, clawing at the dawn? Cotton spittin'. Can someone else's delusion be useful? Can I pack it in this hatchback? Can I press the gas pedal towards the continental divide, stopping only for every beautiful field, or burning gas for the car. Can I unroll the sleeping bag, and rest on it, there? Are bungee cords?

            When a work of art is about failure but fails completely at eliciting the sort of emotion it was meant to, it gives birth to a new sort of tenderness in me. An incredibly sad failure made all the sadder by its failure at sadness. You know, like Rick Moody's first novel, or the Gin Blossoms, or that movie Sideways.

            The weight of dark matter billions of light years away pulling these walls apart, destroying the perfect calculation of some doctoral candidate in physics.

            The way this drink drowns in my mind, blanked for a couple of fast foots, stranded out under the "all we can know is that I am alone."

            Except for twins.