Driving toward the cathedral in the morning, its spire
a compass needle center-lining the street,
the direction seems inevitable, if not exactly
intentional, a lucid focus in the sleepy haze;
wake and work–it’s something, it’s what we do
to keep the anxious-making world at bay,
or at least dilute the concentrated panic.
But in the traffic-crazy evening rush,
the needle has broken off, and puzzle-pieces
of clouds drift apart like renegade republics
dislodged from their positions on the map.
Sunset’s coming, but I’ll see it in the
rearview mirror while I’m riding east,
back into the chaos, as the credits roll.
T. Allen Culpepper