for Emily & John
I got off the river
& everything was f—ed.
There were ropes strung
across the canyons & mounds
of clothes on the beaches.
I found myself deep in
country so strange I didn’t
know the names of
the animals howling
around me. Karaoke night
at La Kiva she tripped
& cracked her face
on that boat. Devo said
it was the meatiest flap
he’d ever seen. For awhile
it hurt to laugh. Still she was
the most beautiful light this side
of sunrise. My truck was making
the sound of an animal in pain.
John sunk his whole arm
under the hood & pulled out
a catfish gasping for home.
We ate good for days. That’s what
I loved about them. How the river
would bend to meet them.
in another life things were
getting western at Fiesta Heights.
Do you remember those brothers
he used to drink with, the ones
who got disappeared? Aliens,
they said. Weren’t never the same after that. One got caught on the bad road from nowhere with a horse trailer full of cocaine. One got caught climbing
out of Spirit Eye with an armful of bones. He dug a hole &
planted them. Said someday that dog’ll hunt. Said something else in the paper, I don’t remember. What good is all this remembering when I don’t even know
where you are. I’m sitting in my boat in the front yard
wondering. If where you are the water is clear. If there’s shade from a cottonwood tree
& little pink flowers sprouting out of the rocks. If there is still some weed left in the bottom
of that bag. If she’s laughing again & if you are loving her