Road Sign

this is how we say hello, one index finger
raised from the steering wheel as we pass
on these narrow roads tight enough to graze
each other’s fenders if we’re not vigilant

our other fingers stay furled to the wheel
to guide us around the road-kill curves,
the single finger released to mark the instant
of our common crawl over shared ground

this one finger the only voice we can afford,
but ample speech for the moment, briefly
perpendicular, as if we are checking wind
direction in the truck cab, pointing out the

shortest route to paradise, or tallying the
count—of fish caught on a bad day, of deer
taken during muzzleloader season, of the
chance we yet have to get it right

:: Tim Poland, in Stickman Review (6:1)

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