“Driving Through Geneva” a poem for Flavor Town USA by Avery Gregurich

for Wallace Ferguson

Driving through Geneva is not a peaceful practice, holds no
practical mayhem beyond a Cracker Barrel, all lit up in rocking
chair relief. When I finally got to Spoon River, it was all out of its
banks, wandering unforgiven inside of Illinois, and when I got to
the cemetery, the caretaker was smoking, small, and petting a smaller
white dog. Everything was still on the menu then, always ordering
the cucumbers and onions whenever they were offered. It took a
jump start, a bottle of Busch Light, and seeing my first honest rendering
of a Velvet Elvis to weave my way out of that cat’s cradle we now know as
nitrate country: the Last Frontier. On the way back, I got caught
behind a county circus, following those tigers north until they finally
found a fairground friendly enough to hold their cages. Would you
care to follow me out tonight to where we’re all throwing coins at
the past, living again in this hour free of all the tigers before and all
the tigers to come? If I have enough left, I’ll buy you a star on the way
back home.

Avery Gregurich is a writer living and working in Marengo, Iowa. He was raised next to the Mississippi River and has never strayed too far from it.

Image: wikimedia.org

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