i learned that Grandad Bluff is a true mesa
that scans the westerly horizon
and surveils the haunted currents
of the Mississippi. learned it
wasn’t a giant looming under the soil,
ready to outstretch and become massive.
though it spired peaks appears
as some monkey ossature, missing abdomen,
fore shoots it’s broken visage grimace.
heard of people falling off after
being chased by fourwheelers. used to
drink draught at Witches and Jesus
and imagine the things that happened between trees.
old times they wanted to turn
it to dust and money but Hixon stopped it.
thank you Hixon. i learned about Grandad Bluff
and missed my history because
one was already made before me long ago,
i suppose that is how it is with most things though.
feel a part, not really, aren’t,
then you read what it is all about.
still i love La Crosse for what it is:
a port city ready for a cold one
waiting for the weekend
always has your back even
if it’s a total dick sometimes.
and they talk about the water and health.
i learned that Grandad Bluff is a true mesa
The rounded mesas
were verdant sheen in predawn hue
and to the east
steam plumes were standing tall
and the sun
when it rose caught river currents
in the fore
so that they came
entwined to one another
on the earth,
the sun all aglow, sharp,
and the river a ghost mirror reflecting,
they were lovers
of common grounds
beyond whose husks melted worlds away
past all understanding.
i woke up this morning
painting a painting,
put the colors in it,
gave it detail,
and so it was.
minor moves in maelstrom.
then i called it my own
and asked for a museum,
a place for it to
be put up in,
a place for it to call home.
eye of the storm, so settle in.
and then i woke up again.
and then i found my painting.
and then i found my museum.
to the leeward we form.
looking at the mirror
even with tired eyes.
thank you for this day.
4:30 PM i would take the 87 to the 67
in St Paul where an area code designates different
and rainclouds drop ice instead of acid.
i imagine that the book at my paunch is warm
and a deranged weapon and those
stuck in their devices won’t notice all that much.
life is like that, stuck in something and unnoticed.
that is what Nest cams are for.
Prior and Uni there is a bus stop
and a café where people shield their faces
from droplets and the smell is something unfamiliar,
musty, affronting, acidic, and rendered vanished.
then the 67, then the backseat blue,
then the same aroma i thought i left on the street,
thought for a second it was me–looked at my boots
–must just be the city. bus tires crawled
the potholes, snaked the corners,
and ran me down a slight incline to a juxtaposition.
i saw red brick molested by graffiti
in high up places from a bridge span vantage,
and felt my lunch lurch at stop and go.
diagonal street not there, but where i am going: Home.
and the mailbox lid was up waving at me,
and the gutters were like the coffee pot
with holes just dripping into the basement
to grow what might hang or cower in a crevice…
really, it has nothing to do
with my commute or the day or the buses
which brave curb rash just to find me.
even if you lose,
morning sun came painting houses
down the block with its invisible brush,
a car sitting outside defrosted
its alabaster exterior,
and John Denver crooned to me thru Google Home
years before his plane crash demise,
talking of Colorado, reminding me of Coors Light–the beer.
Effulgent as the shines spire,
one that Ahab loathes, I realize Uptown
is still intact. Still too cool. Saw buildings rise
like noonday heat, anon, now, fast, quick, ungodly.
realized old ones, their stone facades
still gazed at the new, different,
removed crowd below. Same. something strange,
something with pretense; something–why, you, there!
and it was rocky mountain high and country road
take me home, something American,
something America. going here again,
i too am different. Same. eyes seen things.
notice the art of apology is dead, humor too,
notice tell of another hang-over had by all for naught.
something stirs and people
describe it in a way not the same, unique to them only.
not the same. not the same. as this area.
uptown is still intact.
uptown as a bit more jaded, me.
5:12 AM a teapot steams and sputters,
wet me and drying hair,
i’ve been told they needed something to escape.
the furnace rumbles to a start,
to a certain temperature–it has a point.
machine better than most people.
Katy bar the door on things.
i am thankful that i worked hard
as a child–being brought up,
i feel that unlike my contemporaries
i could handle the outcome of an election,
the outcome of not getting what i want,
had i voted differently,
had i actually cared about results
that didn’t really do more than i did.
thanks dad. and what does that amount to?
some teapot and hanging drape,
teaching English in another day all the same.
what are countries anyway?
5:12 AM, made it, sore tooth, jaw killing,
take meds, fallible and flawed and dying,
i see, i hear.
this green tea in me for the better.
i suppose it’s better for you too.