For a Moment

Annie Persons


Route 11

My car hums a slow hymn down the highway
as night exhales over the mountains. Trees weave
a velvet blanket that calms the whispers
of the stars, and the river’s complex waters rush
the crimson wick of the horizon.

The current drags my gaze with it. I ache
to keep driving, speed up, vanish into the dusk,
learn the Shenandoah’s songs. In my mind,
I turn my car away from the exit, wander
until some spirit guides me to a new sanctuary.

In reality, I stay on eleven, tuck away the unknown road,
am haunted by its procession of street lamps—

not holy, but for a moment, light.


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