Tuesday, May 19, 2015

North Carolina

road pastor's sermon -
locusts, moses, commandments -
rocky mount exit

refined aloofness –
she walks by th’construction zones
‘n th’golden triangle

'bout back to lejeune,
after th'short leave over th'fourth,
but stopped for a drink


dallas t’car’lina
drove a thousand miles t’be sure
t’start th’nascar season


just moved t’weddington
iced tea, drip cake, ‘n’ pride in th’south –
they think they’ve made it

hatteras hotel –
hurricane hits th’empty dunes,
‘n’ he’s drunk in th’basement

okracoke ferry,
pounded by rains – he wonders
if they speak english

what would buddha do
sticker stuck on duck beach van -
drifter peels it off

tour boats on th’cape fear
she looks across at a life
far more idyllic

a-t hiker wants
post box – fly on th’hole ‘n th’screen
chooses th’pisgah woods

badly needed bath
with th’trail hikers – he finds out
th’river’s called th’french broad

lumberton exit –
wanted th’east coast ‘n th’good weather,
he’s so far from both

fly through th'hole in th'screen -
have post boxes here in kyle?
"fahn thank you how're you?"

outside wilmington
girl explains to soldier,
ways of venus flytrap

rain pounds outer banks,
vacation becomes card game-
motel, belowdecks...

hurricane’s closed th’roads
‘n’ they ain’t seen’m – moved t’ th’outer banks
t’drink ‘n’ be left alone

rolls a cigarette,
inhales humid blue feeling
of winston-salem

o'coker's brogue - she'll
tell tourists about blackbeard
n'hoi toide all summer

loggerhead turtles –
power’s out, ‘n’ th’pea island folks
want them to find th’tide

tourists've all cleared out,
got this choppy sound t'ourselves -
okracoke ferry

hendersonville lad,
skipped school t’come t’story fest, ‘n’ learn
t’stretch th’truth a little

raleigh campaign tale –
turned away hundreds ‘f voters,
some things just won’t change

charlotte waitress claims,
calls ev’ryone y’all – d’y’all want
th’pumpkin pie or not?

from clingman’s dome, th’fog
th’colors just ‘bout at their peak
‘neath th’misty blanket

nags head ocean squall –
th’small kitchen gets a bit cramped,
even with th’smell ‘f sage

nags head thanksgiving,
small talk ‘n’ th’bird’s carved - he wonders
what happened to th’sage

thanksgiving grace, ‘n’ th’tide –
nag’s head storms’ll take all th’power
‘n’ worst when you’re out ‘t sea

rest stop, up th’smokies,
th’colors’ve come down th’ridge – th’coffee’s
for th’long hitch out west

tales ‘f th’ghosts ‘f old salem
no shortage ‘f th’paranormal
here ‘n th’yadkin valley

cold snap, up th’east coast –
superstitious ‘n’ won’t stop t’pee
‘til th’virginia line

cape may beachcomber –
f’r years he scoured th’beach all winter,
now th’new tech’ll find th’gold

‘cross th’smokies westbound,
way up here, snow already
s’pose y’all’re used to it

charlotte bellringer
spent thirty years ‘n th’middle east,
this cold fog feels good

chapel hill waitress –
christmas tips’re slow, ‘n’ they bug her
‘bout th’way she says ‘y’all’

raleigh ‘t christmastime
truck driver just in from th’coast,
suddenly starts t’sing

hashtag winterstorm
boone kids know how t’document
wouldn’t dream ‘f shov’ling

rocky mount trucker –
warm cab, cig’rette, salvation,
f’r th’wayfaring stranger

rain pounds th’outer banks
winter ‘f impassable roads,
he’ll drink himself t’death

cape fear beachcomber -
knows where and when each ship sank,
many winters back

light snow dusts raleigh,
traffic slows to fearful crawl -
now hear my footsteps

"should stop trav'ling," she
says, "'n' settle down along th'shore..."
lent'n rains pound nag's head

waiting in franklin
march snow, a-t hikers pounce
on diner placemats

follows th’tar heels ‘round,
drinking’m up after th’games – ‘nough
just t’be ‘n their shadow

turned against th’tar heels
th’bask’tball’s good, but th’drunken fans,
th’nights go on f’rever

he played for th’tar heels,
‘n’ knows ev’ry detail ‘bout th’dance,
never quite learned t’read

cold spring rain and fog
hide smokies from clingman's dome -
a hazy kingdom

ways ‘f th’venus flytrap,
th’sticky sweetness – this soldier
won’t make it t’fort bragg

gentle wind on beach,
uplifting sense of hist'ry -
kitty hawk in spring

charlotte waitress, spring
rains - if she'd meant th'four hikers,
she'd've said 'all of y'all'

th’world’s finest art show,
th’ bright colors of th’homemade signs –
th’dads return t’lejeune

creative spirit –
strength and renewal, may breeze,
lejeune welcome signs

her kids picked th’colors –
homemade sign, lejeune spring breeze
he’s on his way home

spring rain, piney green
busy with kids, but worried
about what he’s seen

loyalty’s reward –
hope road flow’rs, fine wife, ‘n’ th’baby
who’s never seen him

th’soldier’s youngest son,
in th’spring breeze ‘t lejeune, carries
th’most creative ‘f signs

course he loves nascar –
crossing th’smokies t’hit th’first race,
might stay th’whole season

grits, eggs, ‘n’ some coffee,
may drizzle, winston salem
life’s not ‘s bad ‘s she says

up th’trail through franklin,
twenty three miles, ‘n’ th’hiker’s mind
starts settling on th’food

th’way he pronounced ‘ice’,
th’charlotte man ‘t th’ outdoor wedding
she’s shocked he wants some


day ‘t roanoke island
garden ‘f flowers, ‘n’ she likes best
th’statue ‘f her maj’sty

vine ‘f th’morning glory
durham gard’ner likes th’purple,
but ‘s strangling th’cosmos

vines ‘f morning glory
‘n th’charlotte alley – th’locals say
she knows what t’do with’m


back ‘n raleigh, th’author,
tired ‘f th’northern diners, ‘t easter
likes when they call ‘m ‘y’all’

asheville, childhood home –
comes back f’r a friends wedding ‘n’ sees
th’poppies on th’roadside

kill devil hills kid,
last day ‘f school, throws th’driftwood
far ‘s he can, out t’sea

came back down t'raleigh,
brought her a fresh bouquet of
her neighbor's dogwoods


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