Out West

I wish I could get back to San Diego
where the breeze is full of distant danger
as it comes in off the waves and warships
sit forever ready, but for the moment I was there
all was at peace and all I had to do was sit and watch
the light and the water and the bright promises
of what was ahead, and put what was behind
out of my mind.

I wish I could get back to Seattle
where I slept on a hotel roof and raised hell
with all my friends on streets in the shadow
of the Space Needle. It pointed up, I lay there
looking up, it barely rained that week, but I had my cot
under an overhang so what if it did? They say
it’s all gone, all I learned to love in a week, all the dirt
that made it lovely, all the night that made it brighter
in the safe corners of the hotel roof. 

I wish I could get back to a carnival I loved
as it was when I was eighteen — 
to any of them, really; terrifying workers
in the booths, terrifying rides in the midway,
a field full of games built to seduce and rob us
of our last dollars under the bright lights —

then I wish I could get back to how it was
in the dark field behind the carnival,
beyond the last slat fence; the field where I lay
on my back, her long hair framing my face from above,
the moon visible behind her and above us both,
as our hearts at last began to slow down. 

About Tony Brown

A poet with a history in slam, lots of publications; my personal poetry and a little bit of daily life and opinions. Read the page called "About..." for the details. View all posts by Tony Brown

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