“The Cloven Road” by Bruce Robinson

For now the earth is static, there are lines you must not cross,
The picture’s set, it is amazing and great,
Our labor the ecstatic chant of the investor,
The gay purses of the intestate.

I hear your murmur between the tread of my tyres,
Do you say Text stop in five miles,
Do you say now you are well-beaten and under-thumbed
Consider your coordinates, there is a toll to be exacted,

Incorporeal toll road, I am afraid to leave you
For I love you, each chartered mile,
You compress me into my essential being,
You make me more myself than I could ever fabricate,

I might have to stop here, and it will be a miracle
If I can do anything to forge a restart,
I dread the coming of the tow truck
And shudder at the glare of the driver,

After all, I think back to the eyes
Of those I have met behind the polished counters,
Their incandescent retinas burnished
with images of a thousand hash browns.

I think whoever I see must be happy.


[apologies to WW]

Recent work by Bruce Robinson appears or is forthcoming in Panoply, Pangyrus, Seventh Quarry, Common Ground, Aji, and Maintenant. He lives in New York.

Image: John Wesley, “Dream of Unicorns,” from Smithsonian American Art Museum, Gift of Philip Morris Incorporated

🦄 see more of Special Feature: Unicorns

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