After the Races


by Erin Abernethy

After the races have been run
and the cars rolled into trailers
and the drivers have changed out of
brand-plastered jumpsuits
into cheap Wal-Mart casual
and moved on to the next track…

After the crowds have vacated the grandstand,
left their bottles and go-mugs and wrappers behind,
maybe a diaper or two in the parking lot
(people get paid to pick that shit up –
don’t trouble yourselves)…

After the festive blue portable toilets
have been whisked away to
other fairs, other carnivals,
other gaudy pageants of
carnage and noise…

After the fields are returned to the cows
and no longer used for parking or
camping or public displays of
stupendous redneckery…

Still I’m surrounded
by forests of shotguns,
thickets of Confederacy,
bald patches of people so swollen with pride,
so whitewashed with bliss, so willfully ignorant
they could just bust their buttons at the
sight of it all –
these supreme infestations of loud local color
will never be gone,
hidebound and rootbound,
with their blonde Jesus gospel,
after the races.


© Copyright 2015 by Erin Abernethy

Header photo via Pixabay.

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