Flatbed Truck

by Nicholas Johnson

Rusted, abandoned in the upstate woods,
the red flatbed obviously used
for target practice. Shot full of holes, looks
real good against this tree. Abused

after the crash, gutted, left to rot, dirt
in the back became a bed for flowers,
weeds, trees grown in the wrong place. Doesn’t hurt
to take a snapshot to remind us — hours

we spent here, watching how things go: Nature’s
slow way of swallowing things whole. The wind
roars through this valley like a train, its pure
power enough to still our voices, our kin-

ship left in question, something to decide:
Like bad gamblers, we let the future ride.

“Flatbed Truck” appeared in Degrees of Freedom, winner of the 2005 Bright Hill Press Chapbook Contest