Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Along Back Roads by Martha Christina

and creased,
the map leads us
down Old Stage Road
to the intersection of
Bug Hill and Bear Swamp.
Left, then right, to Echo Valley,
where you pull over
near an abandoned farm
to photograph
not the blazing maples
but yet another
dilapidated barn.

An aspen beside
the shuttered house
gives an obligatory
shiver in the light wind.
Each day its leaves
turn a little more vibrant,
as if coloring
marked their future,
not their end.

I listen hard for voices,
a slammed door,
the bleat of sheep,
but hear only
crickets in the ditch
and the ticking
of our hazard lights.

Martha Christina is a frequent contributor to Brevities. Longer work appears recently or is forthcoming in Bryant Literary Review, Muse Literary Journal, Naugatuck River Review, and in earlier postings of Red Eft Review. Her second collection, Against Detachment, was published in April by Pecan Grove Press.

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