09.19.2007

On Track or Finding It Difficult to Think and Then Move in Late September

Once, even between the spur and buck of dusk and dawn,
on the east-end of the Missouri River, the through-truss
swing bridge worked to deliberate reflex, barges and
train traffic like a compass needle. But the pivot pin

of this bridge, that stalk fixed in rivermud, was different
than the bascule or draw bridges of the east or northwest,
those obstinate counterpoints, courses and singularities.
For example, stand in place and turn with work

and possibility. You are the sunflower ashore and
the image of a sunflower photographed when
the proximity of tenderness and the color of discipline
and courage is exposed with time, overnight or winter.

Your face follows the sunlight, a slanted
autumn short but slowed and tired to dusk.
Soon the harvest will lurch to a halt like the MKT.

But, like older times, leeway trumps darkness and you
sense direction and image in the black, latent moment
like a native, explorer with no grid or track, only
the earth and the sky before your next step forward.

Gregory J. Ott (© 2007)