hearne to marlin

it is impossible
to tell when
some of these little towns
simply dried up
there are people
in dilapidated homes
the central color
is something between
a piss stain and rust
boarded up windows
broken down cars
the once scenic views
turned little more
than hokey nostalgia
replaced with ghost towns

i can tell that
memorial day was recent
because the graveyards
are all filled
with fresh bouquets
the only color
among the dingy
hollowed out bones
that were once thriving

the ones that line
the bigger roads
have the same golden arches
and random chicken joint
maybe a taqueria
the others that weren’t
as fortunate
fell prey to the
some malignant vampirism
that sucked the life
from these unmarked stains
only the creeks
get a roadside sign
the rest is forgotten

before the highways
connected everywhere
in america with ease
there were thousands of
tiny destinations
a connective tissue
where the american dream
was a real
vibrant
living thing
something i have only seen
in photographs
or read about
now i drive through
the deep rot
and begin to understand
what happened to us

they trained us
to want the same things
to dream
all the same dreams
wrapped a digital leash
around our throats
and put us on display
we forget to live
for fear of missing out
which leads to everyone
not doing anything
so they can be first
to comment on
the latest disaster
we consume twice as much
but it is all
empty calories
devoid of substance
selling our souls
in the pursuit of mediocrity

and we are
totally okay with it
we don’t have
to experience life
when someone else
just posted about theirs
in the never ending pursuit
of interconnectedness
we simply step
over the corpses
that couldn’t
adapt fast enough
a thousand boarded up
buildings that once
was someone’s livelihood
just another
decrepit eyesore
lost on the backroads
an abscess pulsating
in the soul of america

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