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Near Election, Missouri


There is so much to hear from the highway at dawn
the trucker in his high cab
illuminated by switches
an image of him in speedometer glass
a picture of his wife and one
of his dog pasted on the ceiling above his sleeper
iPhone and Facebook page and the wind
on the hood of his Peterbilt
and then the light rises over the world
revealing weeds and granite
outcropping and later down between hills
on the rise above the river    the dynamite
cut lines scarring the rock face
and soon it's time to stop for coffee and breakfast
trundle over the rumble strips of the off-ramp
parking lot bumps and buddy trucks
the cavernous concussion of empty trailer
or the thunderous lumber of a heavy load
Inside at the bright treatment of the counter
the glare glances off a sticky menu
the clean counter-edge sparkle of mica
What's good     I'll have that
These moments when living is the same
as driving        leading somewhere
unsurprising
within reach
Then the radio with its rush and riling
talk      the propriety to lie
the long day now returning
with anger


Steven Schreiner

River Styx

Number 96 / 2016


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