When you fell on the steps of the capitol,
the senate all looked down at your shown bone.
An itchy rain was falling from the sky
through slits cut in the pink, fiberglass clouds.
While soldiers sleep in plastic garbage bags,
gathering up their salts unto themselves,
the insurrectionary mountains plot
a push to take the irredental sea.
I wish you luck and godspeed, Comrade Mountain,
I pray as I am laying out the quilts
to catch the manna that now falls like hail,
like breadfruit on the devil’s plain.
I stop awhile where train tracks cross the road
to parse graffiti on the cars that pass,
gliding by like a strip of ticker tape.
(I must admit, the scansion is immaculate.)
Out west, we get our sunlight second hand,
when the East has settled the business of the day.
It’s dingy as a tub of used bathwater.
For once I’d like to drink from the headwaters,
tap a cold spring untouched by history—
something unseen since Batu Khan came forth
and split the Pontic steppe as if a curtain.
Marshall Mallicoat is a poet from eastern Kansas. Their poems have appeared in Scum, Funny Looking Dog Quarterly, and elsewhere. Marshall works with computers and currently lives in Kansas with their parents and little brother.