Harsh 20s Reality

A wal­nut tree is cov­ered in flow­er­ing hon­ey­suck­le. A maple tree is cov­ered with fruit­ing ivy. A util­i­ty pole, so cov­ered with trum­pet-creep­er that it looks like a pine from down the road. This hap­pens again and again.

Loops of cable, sus­pend­ed from a util­i­ty pole. A corn­stalk with one ear of corn, grow­ing from the base of a util­i­ty pole. A line­man has punched holes in a met­al card on a util­i­ty pole. What does it mean? 

A yew, its wood paint­ed flu­o­res­cent green. Next to it, a path of pavers paint­ed flu­o­res­cent green, lead­ing behind the duplex. 

A C of made up of var­i­ous bricks, laid too close to the base of a tiny apple tree. Next door, a new fire pit sur­round­ed by old camp chairs. One bench made by thread­ing a thin plank through cin­derblocks. On the dead end of a road: an order­ly pile of mason­ry units, crowned by a sin­gle Ion­ic capital.

Ten buck­ets from Menards in a grav­el dri­ve­way, five black, five green; plant­ed in each one, a sun­flower. Two of the sun­flow­ers are alive. 

A long white pipe from a ridge of dirt. Far­ther along, a mail­box anchored in a con­crete plug, which is itself lodged in anoth­er ridge of dirt.

A pile of shale chips in someone’s front yard, col­ored with rust here and there. Also some pieces of clay pipe. Where did that all come from? 

Writ­ten on a stuc­co wall: 2485. Writ­ten on an alley fence: LOST ORANGE CAT. Rapid­ly spread­ing tag, writ­ten on bins, util­i­ty poles, foun­da­tions: ECIG.

Paint­ed over the glass panes of a garage door: white clouds and blue sky. 

See there, stuck down with pack­ing tape around the base of an ash tree: a sheaf of fake flow­ers, a can of pink lemon­ade, two bot­tles of Bud­weis­er, a ted­dy bear in an orange vest.

(October 2020)