I remember those crazy shads. Nemesis brand. Secret agent wrap around
style, they kept the dust out and wouldn't fall off. I wore them all
summer. 16 hours a day in 100 degree heat, and it only rained once.
Every body had a pair on.
Don't know if them pipeliners or Latinos started it. They out numbered
us white boys 10 to 1, but we spoke English, took and gave orders. Not
me. I was the nigger of the outfit, the fuckin' new guy and,
potentially, whipping boy. I stuck with the Mexicans and Hondurans
mostly, steel or poly pipe, depending what work was. Nicer people than
the drunked up cowboys, they were more tolerant of my lack of skill. You
get teased, at best, along with the job description. Nice to know what
they're saying about you, too, so you pick up the language little by
drought and dead weeds
a bullet hole
in every road sign
Not like my trade. That was life or death, and I'm Jack Black, mother
fucker. There I'd worked with hundreds, besides, on thousands of spaces,
a Metropolitan numbering millions. But don't rescue the schedule,
however far behind, you might have to take your tools and go home.
Until, finally, we all did. Here, your comeuppance was a meal of tamales
wrapped in fresh corn stalk made by someone's loving spouse just before
dawn, their sauce tempered sweetly with crisp green chilies emitting
fire ... la familia producion l'amour. Auqi, no es tardes, amigo, de
nada, primo, de nada.
in columns march
into the grass
Nope, this was a humbling experience. You see, there's just nowhere to
hide on that plain. You might have to stand on a rock to get a cell
signal. Ain't no trees ... but glory to God, there is wheat. Waving
amber and sunlit on end, from it, you can observe the wind criss-cross
the prairie from miles away. Pray, you might escape that splendor, for
at night it becomes an Ocean, phosphorescence visible in the seed. You
could chart a course by the moon or the stars where they meet the
horizon, always ahead, your headlights egging you on, your destiny,
perhaps, to just let go the wheel.
an Angus calf
got all caught up ...
loose strands of wire
Somewhere in deepest, darkest Honduras there's a video, taken on a phone
in a place five cultural nightmares laid end to end and a little
dictatorship away. It's protagonist is a laconic, gangling man tan as
bark but for the raccoon lightness around his eyes - reeling like some
mad shape shifting kami chasing the lads around and over the riven
earth, snorting and stomping, pretending to be a bull - they made me do
it. So little children would laugh. All little children share that
Came the day I hit that deer, fiddling with my wipers in the convoy and a
split second lost. I could have missed him, an immature buck, I'm quick
because I have to be, I was so close ... the Hondurans boys finished
the poor fella off with a penknife, his blood soaked up by the dust
along side that perfectly straight road.
And later, leaning against the red wind carrying the earth's contents to
the sky, they feasted on its haunches lit by the waning sun just before
midnight on the only day it rained.
red sky at night -
curlews choose flight
over Black Tail Dam