Monday, October 10, 2005

On This Northern Highway

On this northern highway
this perfect paved bisection
of the half-known,
feral trees reach
from the edges
for the narrow asphalt's centre.

The eyes
of unidentifiable animals
burn moltenglass red
in the headlights' brief passage
as the sky
deepens from blue
to bottomless black.

Geographers and engineers
have presumed
that the land
is restrained
by this act of binding
the simple trickery
of these few inches of pavement
will hold back the forest.
I study their maps
compound the original trick
with another abstract layer
to reduce the scale of this place
to a creased sheet of gaudy paper
to cope by pretending
I can trace how far I've come
on fat yellow
four lanes
progressing then
to narrower red lines
and onto black secondaries.
if I am honest,
I must
admit the loss of solidity
place myself
on winding broken dashes.


There at the edge
plants claw up
through the crumbling surface
and I see
the blackness at
the limit of the lights
turning green.

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