by Iain Haley Pollock
How easy, driving the White Mountains— sundown, three beers deep—to hold the wheel steady and become a tangent, jump the banked asphalt, rip through the guardrail’s flimsy demurral, to give over to gravity, let it drag you down into a birch trunk or a boulder’s weather-rounded granite. They’d blame the wreck on alcohol or your ignorance of the road or the severity of the curve. But before you left the bar in Plymouth you queued her on the car stereo and while, above you, coronas haze around the mountain peaks, she’s singing— “People Get Ready”—and you follow her. When you pull the car beside the house where you’ll spend the night, your tires spray gravel against the vinyl siding. And the next morning, you wake to dawn light blocked by curtains into shifting shadow, light blocked but there and rippling into the room when a summer morning sets the curtains to sway, sun light thick and resinous and there and rippling and rippling and there.
Iain Haley Pollock has written two poetry collections, Ghost, Like a Place (Alice James Books), which was nominated for an NAACP Image Award, and Spit Back a Boy (U of Georgia Press), which won the Cave Canem Poetry Prize. He is the English Department Chair at Rye Country Day School and a member of the poetry faculty at the Solstice MFA Program of Pine Manor College. In addition, he curates the Kitchen Table Reading Series, a bi-monthly online poetry reading.