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Ryan CollinsListen


Dear Davenport—

                        It's a full lemon moon & I'm stuck in your
craw, an otter caught in your lock & dam. Lock-jawed,
bridging back & forth between your valleyhands. Years
later & I still struggle to be ambidextrous. A good little
drummer boy. My hands aren't as wide as yours & aren't
you a slippery one indeed? I've learned well the where-
withal. I know how your habits make the children heavy
bored. I was one of them, but I'm all grows up & grows up.
I know they'll learn to taste the air around them. Learn their
way between bridges & to firmly shake you w/ both hands.

                        There but for the grace of god,

                                                            Quad Cities


Dear Rock Island—

                        Sadly unwinds the smoke from bbq send-
offs.  Ending in dis- less than beginning.  Friends, as you
said, touch land & fly away.  So we work, learn to second
guess less than before.  We accept consequences of living
in the old fire hazards.  Our blood's still clean & no nostal-
gia or legal speed takes us anywhere back.  But somehow
we share a language.  We speak Esperanto & bear across— 
we learn to love the waterways, which bend us as much as
they're bent.  Some get remissions, others terminal.  Others
just born delivery boys & sacrifices.  It's been too long since
we've seen anything but double, seen anyone anywhere but
off.  Still we make & manage contact.

                        Don't fear the reaper,

                                                            Quad Cities





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