“He could see his uncles slugging each other with such force that they had to be in love. Strangers would never want to hurt each other that badly.”
Sherman Alexie, “The Lone Ranger and Tonto Fistfight in Heaven”
Alabama, the Ridge, late Autumn
by Marshall James
wind sweeps through the pine barrens
stirring haystacks of needles that litter the rust-stained rocks
that roil and slide in a cascade mess down the hills.
mountains of clay and granite seem to relax
like tired steel-mill workers, exhausted farmers,
they rise to the sky and lounge toward the horizon
tattered scraps of cloud, gray and white and grey,
cling to their peaks like so much unpicked cotton.
sentinel pines, their quills whispering like children,
agitated and jerking in the biting November breeze.
red dust rises as the sun drowns amongst crags.
an unnoticed doe bounds away, startling thrushes,
the distant baying of bloodhounds.
I am alone.
the pines sway back, arms desperately reaching