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Manchester Road

Mad drivers
and faster motorbikes leave us behind,
we leave behind
the cities and the employers
that have hindered our movements.

Average citizens, truck drivers,
and minor motorbikes travel aside,
we drive aside
a never-ending sequence
of electric Eiffel towers.

Who has built
this world of excited needles,
this universe of silence?

You
and I
both comment on that house
trapped within the median,
and make jokes
that nobody will laugh at.

The door handle gleams but, disingenuous,
I pretend I’m not looking and instead
watch the lamplights go by above my head.

Who has turned down the heating?
Who’s been drifting?

Worn tapes have lost the voices
in and out of them. But the buzz
and the murmur and the murmur
of these all-thoughtful engines is continual.

My eyes are trapped inside the spirals,
tanned from the orange suns of midnight.
Black men seem so suddenly attractive,
they call me to their yellow signs, the roadside.

Who has designed the bed
of this river in which we’re carried?

You look ahead, and I
am falling half asleep and into hoping
that all speculation will vanish like pollution.
That won’t happen.

Before I can scream
the yellow helmet’s broken,
and a red nightmare has barely started
to cover half the road
of the new highway.

Maybe we will never understand
that objects in the rear view mirror
may appear much closer
than they are.

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