that blurried between sweeps
of wiper blades the rolling rural world
and backlit suddenly this door-less
one-room schoolhouse blocked in with bales of hay
was traveling my direction at my speed.

I turned the knob to raise the human voices
above the drilling droplets as one man
who dies at 89 today and was being honored confessed
long ago the difficulty of giving up
French horn to compose orchestral works.
I thought I must be passing countless forks

and intersections obscured
by this semi I closely followed,
each leading to some hard-won
hallowed-to-someone ground,

then my attention came to rest again
on the reaching-me-clearly breaking
voice of a woman testifying

she thought fireworks
were going off in a theater,
reached to find her daughter’s
arm limp, was pinned

to her by a bullet in her own spine.
The wipers shrieked

suddenly in no rain, and I saw that storm she and I
were caught in traveling

every direction at every speed.

Brandon Krieg is the author of a poetry collection, Invasives (New Rivers Press), a finalist for the 2015 ASLE Book Award in Environmental Creative Writing. He lives in Kalamazoo, Mich. and is a founding editor of the Winter Anthology:

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Published in the March 11, 2016 issue: View Contents
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