Come listen, I will tell you Of the boys who never made it home. There ain’t nothing much round here to do, But drink around and drive. The deer paths built the roads Three hundred years ago or more.
Oak Lane, so named, for the oak tree in the middle of the opposing lanes. Treacherous fog sweep in, dense and thick, obscure the route.
Come listen, I will sing to you The songs we sang, on the levee. Tugboats, and the javelina beaches… The wars we fought under the hum of pirate radio beacons. The bobcat moaning of the switching yards.
The skeeters could pick you up and carry you off, lift your net to light a smoke, a thousand bites on neck and chin. Even the mud was hot as panic, gleaming eyes in the night.
Come listen, I’ll relate to you The arena dust at sunset. Men of an ancient nation, hundred thousand acres Granted by the King of Spain. Beer cocktails made with nopalitos and limon Dodging the strong back legs of cabellos, Dodging the strong haughty derision Of dispossessed and mounted lords.
Cavalry of sage smoke and lanterns, lives lived in horse trailers with little sleep, cups of cowboy coffee at the taxidermy shop appoint attorney generals. Of honor in poverty, gun battles at the courthouse, year 1969. “Tierra o Muerte” in the old Río Arriba.
Come listen, I will tell you Of things you will remember, but will not understand. Come listen, I will sing to you, Songs you will understand, but never remember. Come listen, I’ll relate to you The centuries of mourning, battle, triumph, and nightfall.
Alex Forsyth is in their second semester at PCC. A chapbook, Praise God, was published by KEITH LLC, in May 2022.