At the edge of the bar furthest from the waitress,
assembled atop four legged pedestals, two men
sniff each other’s beers. “So far a foot in each
continent, twice even in Africa and Asia. I collect them
like stones in the pocket we never traded as kids.”
Circling smoke and on the TV screen, baseball.
“The Yanks always again in the world series,
but it’s the Padres that are going to win --”
and on they go, coupling gallant tones of foreign
commerce and post-season batting averages, scaled
discussions that weigh and level distance so they
can believe that the wax on their cars can advertise
a wanted degree of a statistical system to China.
With the coming night, they move from the refuge
they took from the remnants of daylight and ride
on manufactured reflections through roads crossing
bridges with jet fuel and pieced together with metal-
halide fixtures, diagrams of glare on door panels, miles
of polished chrome and windshields of oil that direct
traffic through construction cones beneath the dark nothing
of the black that holds the stars we force into constellations,
crowns of those homes backed into tight cul-de-sacs.
Standing momentarily on the concrete of a driveway,
one of the two, now alone, might catch the nocturnal sight
in the unified visage of a raccoon with the full moon, might
pause at the dream of her low path through pine brush.