The Gravelly Trail

the window
left open

through the
night I develop
a cold

wake sneezing
continue to do so

and there
is no escape
from its grasp

sneezes like
hammers
hammer home interruptions

I hit some coffee
go back to the car
and decide to
visit Memorial Park
for, really, the first time

just walk up the trail
there

cross the road there
to the other side
and slip…

I slide down the little hill
my arm twists
with a quick pain
as if I just lifted
a package incorrectly
I know I also just
pulled a clownish antic
an people are
laughing politely
beneath the line

I make it across
and as I walk continue
sneezing

a frisbee is thrown
across the road
a mother asks her
son if he’s able to
throw it back hard across
yes, he answers
annoyed
and after it’s already
over and she hardly
acknowledges
is onto nudging her
pretend sheepdog forward
Come on, let’s go

I think the same

empty rocks from shoes
get set launch from bench
crack another set of sneezes
into elbow
head further up trail

there are carts
men with clubs
men with lackeys
or assistants

patient standing on top
of the tiny ball
staring down at it

where will it go?

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