29 (2B at “The Tannery”)
You and I. Then we, on the railroad tracks.
walking the blue-gray and rusty byway.
Rocks to throw, spikes to keep, and nuts and bolts
to wonder how it holds, what fell apart.
Beyond the houses, the valley, the pond,
the farms, the charred foundations of the school:
a distant mountain of shining diamonds,
much farther than we thought, and up close, coal.
We sit in the shade of a mining cart,
wish for kaeng khiao wan—strip by the high voltage
of a bulldozer cab. That end of May.
Once a day, once a night: thunder and clack,
teeth rattling in our gums, as the freight cars passed.