Major Jackson

Indian Song

Freddie Hubbard’s playing the cassette deck
Forty miles outside Hays and I've looked at
This Kansas sunset for three hours now,
Almost bristling as big rigs bounce and grumble
Along I-70. At this speed cornfields come
In splotches, murky yellows and greens abutting
The road's shoulder, the flat wealth of the nation whirring by.
It's a kind of ornamentation I've gotten used to—
As in a dream. Espaliered against the sky's blazing—
Cloud-luffs cascade lace-like darkening whole fields.
30,000 feet above someone is buttering a muffin.
Someone stares at a Skyphone, and momentarily—
A baby’s cry in pressurized air. Through double-paned squares
Someone squints: fields cross-hatched by asphalt-strips.
It is said Cézanne looked at a landscape so long he felt
As if his eyes were bleeding. No matter that. I'm heading west.
It's all so redolent, this wailing music, by my side
You fingering fields of light, sunflowers over earth,
Miles traveled, a patchwork of goodbyes.


"Indian Song" first appeared in Post Road Issue 2.