“Map of the Twentieth Century” – Poetry by Samantha Duncan

Moonlight in South Texas - Robert Julian Onderdonk, 1912
Moonlight in South Texas – Robert Julian Onderdonk, 1912

You don’t have to be from Texas to enjoy “Map of the Twentieth Century,” Samantha Duncan‘s poem from our Fall 2014 issue. But if you do hail from the Lone Star State, there’s a good chance you’ll eat this poem up like a bag of Buc-ee’s Beaver Nuggets. 

{ X }

YOU CAN STOP IN THE MIDDLE of Interstate 45 and buy a small or medium trailer
                to store any right-brained assertions about the maternal instincts of
                Texas hills. It exists, and wildfires apologize a thousand times
                                to the Sam Houston statue, with whom you

always promise to take a picture, but continue to take that curve going eighty,
                like you’re expecting a hooker holding chocolate strawberries
                around the bend. Every bridge bisecting the road is hard up
                                for cash, and every penny you have is

spent on someone else. Questions cost the same as the courage for vitriol.
                Corsicana could have your long lost esophagus, everything
                inside you is shelled. Mile markers are doctor appointments,
                                the ones you’ll remember for the book,

and all you’ll need is hidden somewhere, or disguised as debris. Faces
                are painted over and not on, the resilience of a
                continuous motion, and there is a green on a tree that has
                                yet to be named. A direct result of

250 miles of a sickly giraffe’s tongue lapping up un-wanton beaver nuggets.
                If you aren’t careful, you inhale a tire off an eighteen-wheeler,
                discarded like the last piece of brisket on a lover’s plate, he
                                always takes too much. Don’t mess with tires.

{ X }

authorSAMANTHA DUNCAN is the author of the chapbooks One Never Eats Four (ELJ Publications, 2014) andMoon Law (Wild Age Press, 2012), and she serves as Associate Editor for ELJ Publications. She lives in Houston, blogs occasionally atplanesflyinglowoverhead.blogspot.com, and can be found @SamSpitsHotFire.

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