American Auto

In the future
cars not only drive themselves
but start conversations with each other
in primitive Morse code:

Honk – high beams – left turn – honk
means, “stop driving like a douche-bag”
I think.

Their horns squawk with mechanical pubescence
testing limits of horsepower, torque, love.

The cars get mean,
shed mufflers on speed bumps,
stay out too late,
drink leaded.
Form cliques. BMW and Mercedes,
Tesla and Audi to harass the dwindling
human drivers in endangered species
(Nissan Stanzas, Ford Taurus’s),
the laughing stock,
the underprivileged.

Drive them off the road.
Take their gas money.
Damage their pride through
Morse code insults completely
lost in translation.

Trunk – wipers – honk – honk
“That chassis looks like American manufacturing.”
Real scorchers.

While passengers drink champagne
or take naps with the kids.
Dad reaches over to adjust the AC
on their way to the baseball game
in Detroit or Oakland.


On the wind catching your fly line causing you to curse loudly and miss a trout the size of your hamstring


My father never taught me,
he was too busy being a good father
or a good engineer.

I flail, land, and intertwine transparent line,
but the fish know my ruse.
They laugh.



I’m casting by moonlight
fluidly but something is different:
a change in the stars, perhaps,
or a new nightingale coo.

And the river is turned, sucked
into the mountains
instead of the sea.
The moon, not knowing what she does,
turns her bright face closer
To smell the night air fresh with closeness before unknown.
Who wouldn’t?
Who wouldn’t take pause to notice
the peat, the pine, the discrete nothing
and everything of a mountain river?

And the river lifts
and I’m still casting
like an idiot,
just swinging that fucking stick,
like an owner shaking a ball before an excited dog,
into the river now above me.

And the river lifts out of its bed
dropping rain and minnows
onto its barren and rocky bed
on its path towards the peaks,
a cloud
a dense one with malice in its head.

Spring catalysts turn to fountains,
tiny geysers
for deer and huckleberry
displacing water into air.
Fawns prance like children in sprinklers.

The moon is down.
The night alive with change,
a new order, a new geography.

Scientists will calculate and strain:
drinking coffee and sit cinder eyed
at flows and screens.

And I will fish.