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Ten Dollars a Gallon
James M. Cox


Oh, gigantic, hideous thing, long, aluminum, 
rectangular box with pleated sides and flat top, tinted 
windows, shiny black tires, and numb passengers 
nodding at dumb shows inside, why do you exist? Oh, 
container of stuff, rolling along, in command of four 
hundred horses, the cost of your travel from mountain 
to sea matches the yearly income of two campesinos. 
¿Es usted la bestia del apocalipsis? When the wealthy 
man at the helm, high in his padded cabin, back of his 
leather chair sweaty, red-faced, hemorrhoids athrob, 
drinking gin to wash down two Excedrin, tired from his 
days at the bank, has a heart attack and crashes, will 
anyone care? Perhaps his children will weep (but 
maybe not). I see your future -- your round legs 
ground up, recycled, your tin skin punctured, little 
wood-burners installed for cooking, smoke stacks 
jutting out like broken arms. Shelter for the homeless!


© by James M. Cox
Used with the author's permission.

James Cox grew up in both the cities and countryside of Michigan where he learned wilderness survival and a variety of urban skills such as driving fast through heavy traffic. Now retired, he describes himself as a "Taoist wild man, poet, dog lover, philosopher, old soul, cook, dishwasher, flower finder, healer, aphorist, and novelist." He enjoys hiking in the mountains and learning wildflower names in and around Whittier, North Carolina. James has published poetry in a variety of online and press journals and has been featured in several anthologies. He has won prizes for poetry in Milestone Magazineand in the North Carolina Writer's Network annual contest.

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