deere john / flatlanders


deere john / flatlanders

mid-day sun flows down unrelenting on another town
with some name, on a thin blue ribbon with some nunber. On main street,
green tractors punctuated with perky, yellow highlights,
long steel planes and the fat curves of an O’Keefe metaphor
stretch for the length and breadth of a football field or two
their color derived by means of the the marriage of yellow with her primary suitor
made all the more mysterious by his absence
the heart wants, and so
the mind seeks it

el jefe says“wash over here, then there, and then you’re done”
but what she means is “push the mop as if it’s your destiny realized”
creativity and intelligence, virtues that are only just
a burden in the flatlands when one toils for the king
survival of the fittest is perverted, there’s
the stubborn persistence of the wounded and winged
but it still soothes the soul to get time off the reservation
and spend lunch with the lilly-white farmers
strolling to and from their weary pick-up trucks
“caress the mop like it’s your unrequited love”
corporate would be like, so pleased

the verve and glee of barefoot toddlers distracts as the spine tenses and relaxes
questions about cheese inclusion or exclusion are pondered
this is the moment, this is it, a real choice
illusion, it is nothing but a shared delusion
when will someone spill their own truth
“actually, I don’t care whether there is cheese on it or not,
I just want you to spit on it”
customer two-twelve gets his chance, but defers
Coronado and his men parish in shame
the arrival of the free-thinker is deferred,
cheese, no ketchup. Please….

submersion into the heart of blightness
huge, gleaming tractors, proud combines
shameless, preening hoes
stretch for a hun’erd miles under a big midwestern sky
circumstantial evidence, deduction from absence
the genius and the arrogance, a deep-blue dive
swirling through the channels of the subconscious
marionettes on electric wires jerk and twist,
and all the while, the waters of the collective conscious exhibit
nary a ripple


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