Waysides and boonies, the worn-out awning,
slop-sided porch. Roadside morning
glory pastoral. Rough song
               in the chapel, wings in a house

               toothed inside a farm gone
               field, its familiar vine. I walk socks high
               to avoid ticks and weather heavy my hands
                               adrift. Marsh twines woods into island

highways. Headlights spatter emptied windows
with linens and movement. There is so much
to look at indirectly. Chicken coops
               weed hollows. And all I have to do is unshelter

               you. I've never mentioned it, how you were
               a not uncle uncle, how men befriend all the empty
               structures in the familial, of the body. That you
                               would lift me high. That you sometimes

wouldn't let go. There's this song swung country,
salt smooth, warm—I hear it in that back seat
truck tanged acidic. I have this feeling
               I've unknown the crook within

               my palms. Blackwater rivers versed in little
               light, worried roots tucking knees
               into. I just want to hit ground first,
                               scrape prints into grit, pray an unsaved

wish into pieces. The warp of what I unsee
enters by leaving me first. Eyes
boxed-in and turned. The truck's rearview
               wasn't metaphor when I remember

how it angled me closer. The mirror
bent but direct. It takes time

               for a swamp to render; unnamable
               in its reverence. I could go
               naming dried bramble, thick oak
                               eaten torn. I could only name them in their loss.



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