Frankstown Path

to someone from the hills
how much seems to hide

in a river valley
where everything’s in the open

members only
says the dick pic

on the remains of a bridge
for a vanished road

you don’t belong
say the name plates

turned blank again by years
of riverside mildew

here’s the poured concrete
shell of a house

almost everything organic
has rotted out

if you put your ear up to it
you can hear the sky

over there a dry canal bed
with thirsty sycamores

and a pyramid built
to kiln quarried lime

strata standing on end
like books on a shelf

paged through
by omnivorous roots

every floodplain is built
on wreckage and erasure

this is an indian path
on the oldest maps

people wandering upstream
deep into the hills

but not like shad
returning to spawn

more like shadbush
marooned on mountainsides

condemned to bloom only
when no one’s looking

while the flood sows
its own seeds

pods and baubles
evolved to float

horsetails bamboozling the ground
into turning vertical

but it’s privet that crowds
so many others out

running rampant after its escape
from the hedge clippers

clinging to its leaves as if this
were still the old country

passers-by direct me
to a midwestern native

american wahoo with
its pink capsules blown

revealing the fleshy red arils
so like its cousin bittersweet

glowing in the low
december sun

a hillside boulder chooses
this moment to depart

ending its journey
a foot from the trail

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.