Praise to the Joshua, that awkward knob
of spikes, how they jostle the horizon
like a desert of elbows.
Praise, say we who are assembled here
at this rest stop
to this rest stop, its stainless
washroom basin the last for ninety miles.
Praise to the freshwater spigot, the gravel
path winding along and away
from the asphalt to the only tree in sight.
An ash, shading a pool of grass.
Praise to the bareknuckle sun, whose glory
is to stun us with our own precariousness.
So much light and heat here, where the car top
sears the thumbprint from the thumb, and the throat's
reservoirs parch. Praise, for praise is a punchback,
in the song-shimmered air a shadow the shape of the sun.
The Missouri Review Summer 2012
Copyright © 2012 by Kimberly Johnson
All rights reserved.
Reproduced by Poetry Daily with permission