Out West

Arizona Sky
Arizona Sky | Source


Living mad dog mean

and dying slow

in Anytown.

Emptied out and

somehow splitting


you’re nowhere bound

to make excuses

make an exit

flick a smoke

learn to hustle.

Leave your footprints

in the sidewalk

barely smile

flex some muscle.

Toss some gravel

till you’re squinting

at a pinprick

in your rearview

while miles of

bum-hitched highways

trail your bumper

like a kite tail.

Drive fast.

Run out of gas.

Get yourself lost

in some little town

with no radio signals


but white noise hissing

across your dial like a desert

snake you barely noticed

Till it bit you.

Your mind transmits

occasional blips

no one’s receiving

and you’re staring

coyote lonely

into screaming emptiness,

with the barbed wire twang

from an out-of-tune six string

floating overhead

and the rusty old chord

some blue-eyed

ghost cowboy’s

still trying to suck

out of a cheap harmonica

drifting through you

faint as wood smoke.




beneath a stretch of black velvet

poked through with endless diamonds

and just enough light

squeezing from the holes to see


but the face your memory

air-brushed then erased

and left you spinning and

spooning alone

inside the wheel

inside the reel

inside the real

womb that knows not

the laboring and the bearing

but only the pulling in and

the returning


to Anytown.

© 2010 susan beck

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Comments 4 comments

Steele Fields profile image

Steele Fields 6 years ago from drexel hill,pa Author

qwark: Thanks for reading. Check your comments-- I read it and was impressed by your "stellar" vocabulary.

qwark profile image

qwark 6 years ago

Hi Steele:

I'm not a fan of "prose" poetry.

I liked this one tho 'cause I've traveled those "... miles of bum-hitched highways...across this nation many a time, where there was nothing but emptiness and nothing. Passed thru tiny towns which made one wonder how the hell it still existed and why in the world would a human being want to exist there.

I could personally relate to this one...well presented!

I write rhyming poetry which I find extremely difficult.

I go back over my poetry to make sure that there's balance, cadence and it flows smoothly with proper punctuation. Stopping where it should, pausing for quick thought and then continuing.

Here's a rhyming poem it took me about a month to complete:

I would love a comment from you. :-)

Steele Fields profile image

Steele Fields 6 years ago from drexel hill,pa Author

First of all, thanks, notquitecorso, for visiting and for commenting on it. Did you really read it aloud? Wow, that was so cool of you. I have to admit I was sorely disappointed that up to now, no one paid this one any attention. But anyway, it's funny you should say that because a friend of mine read it and said the same thing-- that it begged to be read aloud. I think it's because I worked out the rhythms like an obsessive madwoman, lol. But since I'm not in a position to perform it, the line breaks are supposed to reinforce the beat when you read it to yourself. Anyway, thanks again for being the first and only one to comment.

notquitecorso profile image

notquitecorso 6 years ago from Portland, Oregon

i was wondering if perhaps you were a slam poet...reading your pieces aloud invokes such energy that i thought that you had written these to be performed. wb.

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