Tell me about jet rags.

Tell me about the vertical daggers

in the road all pointing north.

Tell me about Moon Pies & Cokes

you buy conveniently as you drive,

jokes men toss at you

through windows like soiled socks.

Say you are twenty:

you leave the house alone at dusk,

crank up the engine to sail sunset back

to your state now, Virginia, New York,

or Maryland–it makes all of the difference.

When you hit the road to Gretna

you change your mind:

you flip the switch,

cut cruise control, decide:

you´ll stay at the Greenwood,

Route 220, have some fried chicken,

some turnip greens and a cup or two of joe,

one to go so that you can slip into the night

& walk that deep hill to the place where the counties

split and the country roils and rambles

like a feverish dream.

That coffee will slosh

but that´s fine: all will be well,

all manner of thing shall be well

and you´ll wake earlier than the sun

and run down Route 606 as far as you can,

until you see a farmer pitching hay–

there will be new calves in the meadow,

corn in the crib.

You´ll know, somehow,

you´ll run that route

as long as it takes

to make the byways safe

for every mad dog, every hen.