On Concession Eight West at Dusk, by Chris Pannell

April 10, 2016

The clouds over fields make fans

and a vortex. A purple sky turns slowly black.

 

We are ninety-eight percent water

moving at sixty kilometers per hour in a bus

susceptible to the slightest wind, or pot-hole.

 

One day, we’ll rejoin the water cycle as if

we were only ever participants in a storm –

after a life of holding up, in this other form.

 

James is weak, with a headache, unable

to muster the volume of voice to be irritable.

 

His wheelchair gleams blue and chrome

like a naval officer’s jacket, but he’s haggard.

 

A former trucker, he talks less on the way home

from dialysis than I’ve ever known –

too weak even for back-seat driving.

 

Goddess, when you take to the sky tonight

Take what remains of James in your arms.

 

*******

Chris Pannell is the author of two poetry collections, Drive and the award-winning A Nervous City. His next collection arrives this fall from Buckrider Books.

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