we move through scenes

on the walk through the weird suburbia setting

fleece leggings on under running shorts

this friolenta surprised at how 23 degrees F

can seem actually not so cold

_______

a half hour into the train ride

from milwaukee to chicago

where we move through scenes of stripped trees (a brown that is gray) and a coating of snow,

the white giving dimension to all the browngray

chris and i discussed what we knew about what’s happening in yemen

in the car to the station

photos of children dying of starvation i said

and now, hurtling through this winter scene

john lennon’s happy xmas war is over song playing

in my headphones and how is it that this is the first time i’ve heard the war is over if you want it war is over now portion of the song after all these years (probably, thanks to the headphones – the sound so close to my ears)

and what a heart break

a grief

a withering part of the collective us

to know it’s wars instead of war and it’s never over

seems it never will be

under the overpass

oh how i wish i could sit like that again

says the elder woman helping an elder man walk slow laps around the la cross amtrak station where i wait cross legged on the pew-like dark wood bench as the price is right plays quiet in the background

_______

the collection of tents in various conditions

set up under the overpass

as seen from the road my dad takes away from the milwaukee train station

it is 25 degrees

_______

the great novelty

of the armchairs that go back with leg rest thingies that come up at the movie theater

where we wiggle our feet in time to the music –

my sister, her kid and me

passing the tub of popcorn and the tub of soda back and forth

a goofy jokey jovial trio

in preparation

grey kitty following me around

as i sort and pack clothes and and toiletries

as i wash the last of the dishes

as i offer the plants a good deep water

how he curls up against my backpack and hot pink sweatshirt

in a gesture that one could anthropomorphizingly read as

something that sounds like please don’t go

shelter

the person burrowing deeper into their sleeping bag
under the overpass

as i click clack by in my boots
along the path

that moves along the water that moves
into the rivers
my phone tells me
it’s 23 degrees here today

as we approach

the light of the blowtorch flame glowing
in the blackhawk auto garage
as we approach
and the chemically smell
it brings
_______

the overwhelming smell of rubber
in the tire shop
_______

the patch of bright blue
overhead
peeking from behind the gray covering of cloud
over ‘downtown’ viroqua
as we roll in
_______
what the fucking actual fuck (pardon my french)
can i write besides:
i fucking hate
what the “president” of the “united states” is doing/has done/will do

and doesn’t he know, that really, california is mexico (take a history look-see)

and how can i send the opposite message
across the border wall:
a glitterheartconfetti cloud
bursting with welcome
with i’m so glad you made it
with offers of water to drink and chairs to sit in and
quiet safe spaces
for people to sleep after such a long
long journey


California Highway Patrol police cars block the highway leading from Mexico into San Diego, California, Nov. 25, 2018 – voice of america, day in photos.

A migrant family, part of a caravan of thousands traveling from Central America en route to the United States, run away from tear gas in front of the border wall between the U.S and Mexico in Tijuana, Mexico, Nov. 25, 2018. U.S. authorities shut the country’s busiest border crossing and fired tear gas into Mexico to repel Central American migrants approaching the border. – voice of america, day in photos

without placeness

the all day high speed wind,
the kind that gives cool temperatures their teeth,
rustling the crunchy brown leaves of the dead sunflowertree
in the front yard flower patch –
the kind of wind, its persistence,
that drains the energy
of any creature out in it
and gives humans red cheeks

(which indirectly makes me think
about this transition from on land to off land
might be comparable
to transitioning an elder from their house/yard
to a senior center,
who are they without their placeness?)

in the backyard

a true friend
i say to/about búho for their willingness

to allow jennifer and i
to dump our full compost bucket
whose contents
stink and juice and ooze
while sliding and splooshing out

into their caged pile
in the backyard