On Highland Road
The wilderness at the end of the road
was sumac, cattails & poison oak—
a susurrus of ghosts in my head,
 
a smoldering dusk of livid blood
above the faded redwood decks
of the brick tract homes on Highland Road.
 
I knelt beside the creek, & stared
at a single, pristine raccoon track,
till something snapped in the back of my head,
 
as a transformer on a pole exploded
there in the sky—with a fiery crack—
a ball of flames at the end of the road.

Then I ran home to tell my dad
(adrift in a haze of cigar smoke)
before I could think it was all in my head,
 
& led him by the hand outside,
& pointed westward at the smoke—
still hanging there, at the end of the road—
but it was gone, it was all in my head.
 
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