Early September, broken down in a lane.
No cars for miles; miles even to the next yield sign.
The sky is like bruised fruit; trees are thorns.
There is not even a goat in the goat field.
Cursing the missed service, the full schedule,
I step out of the car, the wood warm with droppings
and the sweet rot of flowers on the forest floor.
But I am not alone: squat, black in the palm
of my hand, there is my BlackBerry — as snug
as a revolver, firing thoughts across the planet,
brilliant for jottings, for engaging the thumb,
friend of the salesman and lonely pilgrim.
My stubby sleep-depriver, my dark nimbus,
I cannot say what I love most: your quiet
obedience, or your knack for the unknown.
Almost midnight; a screensaver of stars,
the hum of night. The garage said someone
was on the way, but that was an hour ago.
Now even the radio's gone. I piss gently
into the brambles, wary of the cow-parsley.
What to do when your friends are asleep, or worse —
off-line? Check my Amazon sales rating, compare
reviews of Station Island with District and Circle,
run diagnostics of my own work, order Plath.
I take a walk up the road, casting out
for a signal, a window; something other
than my shadow. I aim the screen's glow
into the woods, hoping to catch the blaze
of a pair of badger's eyes but find only
the slow curl of leaves competing for the light.
Colder now and there is nothing but the
stamping of the ground; the spilt-ink sky,
a battery warning, the polite goodbye.