Sunday, April 15, 2018

Suzanne Allen's "Capital Beltway" #Poemaday #NationalPoetryMonth

Capital Beltway

I.

On roads that were two lanes
thirty years ago
we inch along at 8 a.m.
six lanes across
between Mack trucks
and van pools
no speed limits or stop signs
all headed the same way.

Interchanges arch, cross
over, under
the world’s tallest roller-coaster,
dwarfing the biggest
tractor-trailer.
Once you get on
you can’t get off
until the next exit.

Maps aren’t enough
you need good directions
green-and-white exit signs
the only landmarks.
If you don’t know your way
stick to the middle lane
until your exit looms ahead.

Watch closely
you may see the exit sign
before you pass it.

II.

Wish on a star
the Mormon Temple’s spires
gleam at the top of the Beltway
a Disneyland castle
at bottom
the Masonic Temple’s gray bulk
rises from Alexandria
across Woodrow Wilson Bridge.

The inner loop
goes east from Tysons Corner
outer loop west
from John Hanson Highway
or is it
the other way around?


--Suzanne Allen

Suzanne Allen is a writer from the Washington DC area.

--from the archives of The Broadkill Review
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