Don Welch

August

From In the Fields’ Hands. 1998.

On the interstate
cars and trucks
snake the asphalt,
rain diesel, fume wind.

Behind windshields,
eyeballs, dull in their stares,
are swathed in continuous hums
and the cradles of metal.

Up in the hills it was green,
tall grass overgrowing the cemeteries
by the graded roads,
while down here.

in the mirages of the roadway,
the wraiths of wildflowers
dance on. Shy, violet,
evanescent as silk,

they are ghosts reclaiming
the highway,–beebalm,
mallow, and wild iris,—
prairie girls leading us on.

Used with the permission of Don Welch