Gateway

When I was a young Redbirds fan, bouncing from coast to coast, I learned that I could pick up KMOX, Jack Buck, and Mike Shannon just about anywhere at night, though never in California.


When once I was a child in the west I was looking east,
and when a child in the east I looked west,
ever aiming through that Gateway;

and I again was on my road west
when Lady and I were again children,
basking in the wonders of commerce and truth and trivia
in fashion magazines and such vivid things,

in a moment without motion,

I looked up to feel a warm breeze from the eastern ocean,
but there was time passing in a vision

of a Gateway
rising on the horizon
over the River I could never cross completely

and in the Gateway beckoned a City
and Lady greeted the City—warmly
as though he were expected
as though they were old friends
and I followed her through the Gateway
and I cannot cross that River
and she sat in the lap of the City
she kissed the City
and before my eyes she became the City
and those eyes last saw her in the Gateway
and I continued my steps west
and I thought how strange that City had always been so friendly
how the City and I had always been such friends
but now she is the City and I cannot recognize him

And years from home I am touring Topeka
Columbia Lawrence Independence
pre dawn hours thinking on the shape of things
side walks car lots front yards thinking on the shape of things
not half sleeping in the park dodging cops and moon and
dreams that she is gazing at the sun
setting on the Pacific
that she is squinting for my silhouette on the horizon
and I am not in California
I need to see the sunrise

and her Gateway

and think upon the shape of things.

This entry was posted in Verse.