Hour of Starting


In the hatchback. The forerunner 
parked in the sedge past the gore. 
Pressed against live oak. The edge. 
Unfinished wallboard. 

Around the bend on Gumbranch 
Road, under the stands where 
the high-school kids smoke. 

Past curfew. Archie’s Nite Club. 
The point of knowing where 
one ends, another begins. 
In the crux 

               the climber dynos

as though the body
doesn’t come down 
to five pounds of ash 
and a bathtub of spit. 

Half-second hang—

illusion of perpetual blue, 
dilated expanse before grasping 
what’s come undone unglued felled
wild and through as though nothing 
is beneath you.

"Hour of Starting" appears in Issue 66 of The Cortland Review