Art Movie

Red is a secret in the trees. The train passes through the trees in Alabama. Red earth red earth. The winterlight consumes the field. The light silvers. The light relieves. The light thrown as dust upon the field I put my ear in. I crack an egg, and a saxophone that tells on me, yells at me, comes out no yolk. The train hollers to stop. The train stopped, still loads new passengers, but the conductor won’t let me get off and kiss you. You know that’s what I haunted to do. The stage is the window circle between us. The emergency exit door. I keep you in my ear and give you how I’m doing and what I want to eat were I not on a train. You and your white boots. You tell me what else could come out of an egg—women all the way down, holding waists. The train is a place going by, strictly passing through. I touch a stranger’s wrist going back to my seat, the whole train becomes a garment I put on. I touch indiscriminately. I can’t stay, I tell the dog waving from your convertible. None of the windows open. I held your gaze until I couldn’t. In the previous scene, I took you to the slip until we were shining tunnels for sound. I took your sound for my name. Never asked what I called myself.

Copyright © 2019 Taylor Johnson. This poem originally appeared in The Offing. Used with permission of the author.