white bright bursting

i catch her watering the backyard garden
while she’s within earshot of her parents
and feed her line by line
a chrystos poem

emory and i thumb wrestling in the back seat
me teaching him the bow, kiss, begin! that goes after
one two three four i declare a thumb war
and how this is a shred of tuesday i still carry
with me now (12 years later)
how i pass it along without letting it go

how every time i see a centurylink van
in its green and white, i can’t help
after being in the borderlands
but read as border patrol
and i imagine a graphic design teacher using
these two as examples of branding and
because of this mistaking
bad design choices


here and there a single small tree with
white bright bursting
along its branches tucked into the rest
of the bare unblooming forest
later, they are guessed to be bradford pears

a car full of the four of us
(mica, trish, emory, me) hurtling south
on 61 under this marvelous sky
(gray, sometimes steely, light blue, dark blue, whiate shreds
texture, layer and then the sun punching through)

waving to emory two cars over in
gamma’s back seat at the stop light
just after we all pull out of the
walgreens parking lot

frankie, you could adhere to that sign
mica says from the driver’s seat about
the billboard in red and white with black text
that says ad here

doesn’t mean you’ve left.
i read the poem from a book called salt.
by nayyirah waheed that kris, trish, mica and i
pass around and take turns
poem-fortune reading


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