Death is a highway in the Trans-Pecos
where painted white road perforations
blur into single lines.
At night prehistoric things fly into the windshield
over and over until the wipers have smeared
so badly you have to pull over somewhere
in the five hundred miles between nothing
There are no carwashes in Hell, just a two pump
gas station stuck so far back in time that you can’t
fill your own tank and forget about a credit
You want to order a sandwich inside
but the cat perched atop the counter suddenly
turns your stomach at the thought of barbeque
and fur balls.
Dawn begins creeping over the low mesas
and you stand outside your car as the wind
blows dirt into your mouth.
The kind of grit only a cold beer will wash away
but you can’t buy it until noon so you grab a luke warm
soda from the back seat where it’s nestled
between a tote bag and a half eaten bag
Just a half day left of Chihuahuan desert
before you can finally wipe the dust from your eyes.
--Carly Bryson writes from Houston, Texas. Her work has appeared in Calliope Nerve, Shine, Carcinogenic Poetry, and Poets Against War.