Blue Ridge, East

Escapism by bumpercars and coffee
houses shaped from shacks, chipping
Robin Blue and mismatched vinyl chairs–
How do you keep your shine?

Tilt-a-whirl mountainsides, geometric
faces, you’ve never seen a tunnel carved
into the earth, eyes dripping away
the mud, tangles until the peak:

At the bottom, we’re only in bathing
suits, sun hiding above green palms,
skin sliding against cool-hearted
waterfalls–slide… At the top, sweater

weather and cigarette smoke, soft
angles enough to bring quartz
from the sky. Return to loam, rich
with our fingers. Here, I’ll lay down

the salt circle to keep us out
of drought, while you lay down
your palms to keep us from leaving.

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