This Train


From car to car, a release, as of dangerously
held breath--The brakes, you say--we

begin again.
Again the glass, in its steady


abrupting of one vision for another one as
swiftly, as relentlessly abrupted, reminds

what I keep forgetting to understand--how
many things of this world exist merely

to be

got past:
the skinned landscape; across it, all

the hooved lives reduced to the one shuffle
in hard country;

the occasional hawk, but
none flying--

each seemingly more affixed
to than settled on this sidelined plow, that

fence-less fencepost ... Here was a farm or
Here a field

--until what?

Against boredom,
restive, we play games like Name This Train.

I choose Wanton Disregard; you choose, as
always, Train of God--
you say, Everything
is God's. The news, for easy enough miles,

is good; you will never know me; it won't be
yours to fill, ever--this sweet, failed life.

Carl Phillips