Vagrant

May 23, 2008
By Katie Holbrook, Buffalo Grove, IL

I, the sovereign scavenger,
watched the tires tumble over, crush
the books, the clothes and my past,
anchors swept free of my palms.

As I ground the hot gravel,
a mustang slowed to my side.
I sneered and turned on my heel,
my mouth coarse with excess salt.

The heat crumbled in my veins
as I stood, choking on dust,
and swarming with Summer’s heat,
the pick-up door extended.

Humidity shoved past me
with traffic of destinations
as I saw my broken sails
and recalled days of doldrums.

My ankles tensed, free of weights,
and my sharp bones bit the skin.
I’d no reasons to drift on
as a vagrant with closed hands.

When I reached out, the car rocked,
pulled the muscles in my sides,
the door clapped shut in the skiff
and dusty seat clung to my spine.

He gripped the helm and grinned at me,
held life’s wine to my parched lips,
the sun glinting off of him,
my rescuer, mast and wind.


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