the rocks we piled on the riverbanks are unforgivable
You might be thinking well what the heck this is just the same thing over and over for twenty five minutes but you should try putting it in your ears and going for a walk it’s pretty great that’s what I’m doing right now it’s spring finally and I’m walking to the Bridge in my denim jacket like one tuff bysshe. Hoards of pigeons. So much trash in the grass. Boxelder bugs already socks ants made of glass get drug tested at the shirt shack. A peach spray paint heart on a rusted out electrical box on a wooden telephone pole. Visions of No Trespassing. Train cars like iPhone ringtones. The trailer park by the municipal ballpark is pretty chill. Popcorn and cookouts and Snoopy flags. the smell of cleaning supplies and Pokémon go. I’d like to live in a trailer home if I could soundproof the shit out of it and play drums. I’m listening to my ambient track again. That feel when the lawn signs outside the high school are legitimately profound. I miss you I miss Ardent. I’ll never forget Yana. I remember watching the deer from the parking lot. I hope I never get hit by a car again. I try to point my toes forward. I’m embarrassed about my duck feet. I hope I get kissed again someday. Doppelgängers and rollerbladers. Yo-yo. Tai chi. Yaki soba and chai tea. Across the train bridge, onto shipping containers. Curious German Shepherd, chipmunk low to the ground. Ice and snow on the banks of the stream. There used to be a bench right here where I’m standing now. I sat here and read Kurt Vonnegut in high school, with my shirt off, on summer break. Big goose i’d love to dip my feet in that water . Layers of land river shrubs snow sand. A license plate that says Hey Man. A license plate that says Hey Mon. McMansions on the waterfront. Mom and little boy always read the plaque. Spinach and synthesizers oversized bicycle tires. The hiss of the water treatment plant the purr of the longboards. Oh Lordy let there be me never walking into oncoming traffic. Walking in between. walking through. Building number Five and Door Two. I love the cool of the river. Ice floats down the current on a log. Everything moves around. Gender bonding. Sticker artists . It would be cool if I felt like I could trust someone. Your dogs are terrifying. Come summertime there will be so many people down here doing nothing. Crowded on the beach. My feet are starting to hurt. Running down the volcano. The saddest part of the Little death shrine is the beanie baby. Woah I walked way farther north than I thought I was. Oh well. Or did I? Holy crap I can’t remember. Tall grassss dead leaves Keystone and a fastfood paper bag. Brown hues behind a bright blue. I sit down outside Building 4. I tie my shoes on a park bench. The bench is in loving memory of Abby and so is this ambient track. Underneath the dedication are the lyrics, “You’ve got a friend in me,” followed by an attribution to Randy Newman. I love Randy Newman, and I wonder what Abby was like. Did she also hang out at the river, writing poems and watching dudes in camo fish the Little Missouri? They passed slowly, their motor clicking away. Boats are fine. It’s nice to be in the water, but I much prefer being in the water by the strength of my own body. Canoes, row boats, kayaks, paddle boards. Arms and legs. Swimming is truly one of the greatest things I’ve experienced in my lifetime. I’m walking kinda far. Hope I don’t screw up my feet. I’m hungry, thirsty, and everything feels great in the wind. Here we go again. Bye Abby. Fluffy dog and a high water mark. I don’t know what I want in my life. Goose reflection in the water. LFO polarity. Reeds and branches a Hardee’s burger box. I hate this stupid dumb big house. Geo Tracker. McDonald’s cup in the lawn. “Sunflowers” by Low. Some kind of dead rodent in the grass in the median. XIVii spray painted on the retaining wall. Used to be a Pizza Hut. Seems like everyone in this town has a dog. I feel much more comfortable loudly singing Low on the bridge. No one’s around. The noise of the cars drowns out my voice. Goose with strong legs pushes against the current. The bridge shakes with passing traffic. The view to the south, and the wind off the water, this is my reward. Inlets. Animals spending their afternoon searching for food. The rocks we piled on the riverbanks are unforgivable. Someone really should make me vegan cheese curds. I could stand here all day. I mean I really could. It’s up to me. It’s my choice. I can stay here as long as I want today. I guess this is adulthood. Battery at 42%.
This poem was written on a six-mile walk on April 22nd, 2018, while listening to "Maybe There Isn't a Reason" by Citizen Scientist, and then listening to the sounds of the world. The track was named earlier in April, composed in 2016, and is scheduled to be released on May 11th.
I loved spending time on Abby's bench, giving my feet a break, and thinking about who she was. Abby was killed by a drunk driver in 2015. She was 22. Her last name is redacted out of respect.