Fall 2010 • Vol. XXXII No. 4 PoetryOctober 1, 2010 |

The Tourist

For the sake of argument, let's call this town your town. You only have time for two outfit changes and Jill tumbling after, and then it's another picnic. Maybe a stoning, if we've had time to think about whether the law, as it exists, has principles that apply to new situations or not, or if someone has been part of the only way this can end. Certainly, we're here under duress, at the radio again, as if half afraid we're going to be forgiven for something. The way a pilgrim begins, as a little puddle of mercury and a stir stick made from whale bone, and then we're set for bar bets and antique instrument day, where you have to hurry, before the yeast has time to react, and to perhaps grab a weapon of some sort, or to call in to the call-in show. All the words there are are sounding, and you're standing there in colorful boxers, thinking surely this is a new situation. "Bespeak," we call out, then, or else we just shuffled off to Durango, dreaming of buffalos and whoever has the bomb

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John Gallaher’s most recent book is Map of the Folded World (University of Akron Press, 2009). More of his poetry can be seen in the Fall 2010 issue of The Kenyon Review.

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