White Cross

Both hands are on the wheel,

one foot putting pressure on the miles

to go by faster.


The face in the rear view mirror

looks like it’s moving toward the last half of its life,

fine comets colliding with the outer corners of my eyes.


The green highway signs come slowly into view

until the letters are clear,

destinations that belong to others.


Measured by time and distance I’ve come halfway.

Still, the miles ahead feel like homework

I would have once put off for another day.


Up ahead, a curve.

Sudden.  Steep.

A white cross blooms above the hem of weeds,


erect as a sentry would stand—

its sullen duty to guard, honor,



I imagine the driver must have made a wrong turn

at some important crossroad,

a fast left instead of a hard right.


I’m sure she (it must have been a she)

had both hands on the wheel

when the cell phone rang.


Halfway into the curve she put on the brake,

yielded to the apology

as it crashed into her ear.


Exits approach,

blur in my periphery

like second chances I’ve decided not to take.


Billboards erupt, apathetic,

promising low rates for self storage,

the best care for my heart disease.


For a reasonable price

I could have precision tires that grip the road,

hold on tight—


a few of the things

I’m starting to believe

I just can’t live without.




DeMaris Gaunt, 2009

Published by demarisgaunt

I currently live in Greenwood, Indiana. I love to listen to music, books on CD, podcasts or NPR as I work in my studio.  My favorite artists are Andrew Wyeth and Edward Hopper. I love poetry, but only the good stuff that isn’t so abstract I can’t understand it. Abstraction better lends itself to visual art, I think. Stephen Dunn is my favorite poet. He’s said just about anything that can be said about the inner workings of the heart and mind. My favorite novel is Atonement by Ian McEwan. My all time favorite band is The Cure. I love science, and anything that relates to how the mind works. I don’t believe in the supernatural. If I could meet anyone in the world, it would be Richard Dawkins or Steven Pinker. If you don’t buy my art or read my poetry, buy one of their books. It will enrich if not change your life.  My favorite things to do are hiking, kayaking and camping. My favorite food is so common, I’ll keep you in suspense (It starts with a P). I prefer chocolate to vanilla. Green is my favorite color. I have an aversion to planning or scheduling of any kind, and I live for spontaneous adventures! Telephone conversations make me anxious, and I avoid them at almost all cost. I had a happy childhood. I’m having a pretty fantastic adulthood. I have every intention of seeing my 100th birthday, after which I will happily relinquish my guts to the future of medicine. Cheers! ~DeMaris

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