In one smooth swoop my head lolled down and I caught
it, pulling myself from sleep. I looked over to John
to make sure he was still functioning. The movements
of his wrists and ankles were slight and in control.
My mouth was drier and my muscles were sorer than
usual, but my vision was soft and clear. It was easy
to stare into my own face, suspended there in the side
mirror, cutting the road from the sky. I watched as we
passed a herd of black cows suckling on dead grass,
the last humps of life before the Midwestern stretch
of fallow cornfields. I closed my eyes against the
sun, which shone through the colors of a glowing
fetus, creating an apocalyptic sky below my surface. I
let my eyeballs roam this new vista: there were clouds
like whiplash bruises, and I was half expecting the
dark silhouettes of war helicopters, or a swarm of
prehistoric dragonflies, to break through with
machinegun noises and the roar of beating wings. But I
wasn't worried, because it would be in slow motion,
through a screen, a windshield, and there would be
background music rolling with the wheels.
If you've any comments on
this poem, Annalynn Hammond would be pleased to hear from you.