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)