State Road Sixty-Two

State Road Sixty-Two

Twentynine Palms

two thousand eleven

a salty, old Marine

tried to tell me

the legend

of the Joshua Trees


he spat brown juice

from the shade into

the burning sand

muttered in his

midwest timbre:


the trees only grow

at the gates of heaven and hell,

and heaven is in Israel,

can I borrow like ten bucks?


looking back, though

California was heaven


and sometimes when

I’m drifting along

dusky Florida roads,

I imagine

the twisted silhouettes

of the Joshua Trees

extending their hands

in the place where

God could hear me