Eagle, Colorado
Sunrise routine
Truck engine idling
Heater vents blowing
(One whistling through a broken tooth)
A silky soft puppy head barely seen
Above the glowing dash
As I rummage in the ash for cash
Parked at the pump
That’s where I always go
For the best gas station coffee
A large Farmhouse blend
with three squirts of French Vanilla
Bless her
A kyphotic old lady behind the register always giggles at me
“Take it,” she says, “It’s on me.”
With a wink and a blush
An elderly crush
On a man with sleepy eyes and massive bed head
Halfway dead
Until that first steamy sip
When I burn my upper lip
Toasting her kindness
On my way out the door
Ninety-one dollars to fill the tank
Thank you Joe Biden
WOKE squinty-eyed JOKE
An inflatable jingle bell clown with a silly frown
—I’m off script—
Until I’m off the pavement
In the direction of Steamboat Springs
I forget about blue fools and puppet kings
Think of better things
As a red dirt road lures me higher
And deeper into the White River National Forest
Where the Creator
The Unseen Confectioner
Powders the pine trees
With cold crystal sugar
And the whole world is a Christmas card
And the frozen cliffs are shiny peanut brittle
And the dark den far above me is a manger
Where there isn’t any danger
As long as Christ is there
But He isn’t there
And I sense the legion of sharp fanged demons
Stalking me
Alone in the wilderness of my wild thoughts
Regrets with deadly horns
Bears and mountain lions
Ghosts of the Rockies
Hunting for dinner
Seeking a sinner whom they may devour
Pure snow highlighting all of the black spots
Causing me to ponder
Dark things
The end of a gun barrel in my open mouth
Cancerous moles
Snake holes
Hating them all
As springtime wakens and thaws the monsters
Especially the one hiding in the gaping hole of my heart
A sucking chest wound of lostness
Choking me out
Until I park in the middle of this Paradisiacal nowhere
Step into the high mountain air
Where there’s no phone signal anywhere
Much like my faithless prayer
And gusts of wind
Lonely to the bone
Bitch and moan
Up to seventy miles per hour
Almost knocking me down
Pushing me around
When suddenly
For some inexplicable reason
I’m in the mood for a piping hot bowl of my mother’s potato soup
As I leash Jack
Careful to pack a 45 Sig Sauer
On another whiskey walk
And a long dizzy talk
With God in a soundproof forest
Andrew Dabar