Sunday Poem


We glance always at this little
window of the slowest slot machine
to calendar our progress out.
The meter not ticking is active
just the same, summing up distance
toward the big question, the rollers
marking off ground and still counting.
We’re happy no matter how far
gone, to be clocking off the miles,
to keep on breaking our own record
of progress, to make the old wreck
go another revolution
of the thousand wheel, and the ten,
as one candy-size roll of our
numbers turns up another ten times
slower until they all turn up,
in the ode to travel, zero
zero zero zero zero
as it was in the beginning.

by Robert Morgan
The Language They Speak Is Things to Eat
University of North Carolina Press, 1994