We sailed on black tarmac, rudderless, root-locked…

After posting and publishing this poem yesterday, I realized it was still falling short. I had high expectations, but I think that was mostly based on the fact that I had hammered some of my ideas into the difficult sonnet form and knew more or less what I was talking about and feeling and sensing in the verses. Unfortunately, I don’t think I was able to convey those thoughts, merely to relive and recreate them for my own amusement. Ultimately, I do think poetry should be communication driven. I still don’t have a problem with making the reader work, that is part of the fun, unlocking the secrets, but I do not wish to revel in obscurity either. So hopefully, this new version, with unnecessary fluff cut out and sinews tightened will be more readable and more to the point of my mission.

We sailed on black tarmac, rudderless, root-locked,
adrift in white Ford, skimming the humid gauze
of Des Moines’ dark. By dash-light glamour you mocked
my pulse, quicked by your sweaty petting palms.

A rhinestone shroud of halogen soaked hues
absorbed your lolling laughter, low and louche.
Still unloosed, the lash that binds honey to the bruise
that purples my dreaming eye with spreading flush.

Buzzing in the noon, knee-deep in summer’s corn,
laid out on the hood, like serpents on a stone,
green and white and tan and taut of form —
and molten as the flames that feed the unbound heart.

The highway miles unroll; journeys never cease;
time ‘s the turner’s wheel, and memory the grease.


We sailed on black tarmac, rudderless, landlocked,
drifting, by turns, to split the humid gauze,
as under the rayed and haloed light you mocked
my rising in your sweating, petting palms.

Iowa noon, buried knee deep in the corn.
Tan, green, and white. And lithe as serpents wound —
splayed out and twinned on brazen steel shelled form,
molten as the flame that feeds the unbound heart.

A rhinestone veil of halogen soaked hues,
be-shrouded your lilting laughter, low and lush.
Yet, unsundered from the honey is the bruise
that stains my inner sight with spreading flush.

The highway miles unroll; journeys never cease;
time’s the spinning wheel, and memory the grease.

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