Crescendos vibrate somewhere below the music in the
shadows like a subliminal underground railroad. No stars,
just cyclops moon. Open window, I stared into nothing—
thought about runaway slaves and their efforts to hide.
Bush, swampland stench and fire, fear of auction,
separation and the whip and I was there generations
away next to you on cracked leather seats as you
smoked Djarum cigarettes. I didn’t smoke but I loved
the taste they left in your mouth whenever we kissed,
which was more often than not. You can’t get those
cigarettes anymore in the United States. I inhaled, drew
all that I was into myself from the heated breath of the
wind and tried to make sense of the shadows.