Roadcut, Road

( after John McPhee )

Scraped or blasted,
Tissue sections on a slide,
Roadcut gives cognition a ledge to sit on,
The mind’s eye a glimpse of the whole
Ancient grinding planetary catastrophe.

On a more immediate timescale
Roads themselves cut lives
And tell the stories of species
Along my rambling ways.

Spattered death implies the hidden joy
Of the ones that escaped the car.
For each dead snake, one would hope,
Slither multitudes ignorant of tire.

When slugs emerge onto the road,
A carpeting spasm of spotted slime in which,
Despite some traffic,
The living still outnumber the squashed,
How many more must be squirming about
In the gravely watching foggy vineyards?

Charles Greer is an autistic poet-engineer and musician probably out running in NorCal. Having coaxed machines and inspired live audiences for more than two decades, he has just begun to edit and share his poems with the world at large. Charles studied Russian poetry and Slavic linguistics at Yale and Berkeley.

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