They Call Thishttps://i0.wp.com/barrenmagazine.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/07/ka3.jpg?fit=1920%2C1920&ssl=119201920Lorrie NessLorrie Nesshttps://i0.wp.com/barrenmagazine.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/07/lorrieaness.jpg?fit=96%2C96&ssl=1
After your call.
After an all-night drive down I-95.
of red lights, white lights
slashing the darkness,
Like lava, the lights erupted
on my eyelids.
They call this an afterimage. A sign
that our rods and cones are at their limit.
To my knowledge, there is no name
for the starburst of radial lines—dash lights
refracting through tears.
After the cascade of crumpled of tissues,
the passenger seat glowed white,
like night blooming jasmine.
They call this a nosegay. A small collection
After I took the exit,
I entered a truck stop. The sodium street lights
cast peach puddles on pavement.
I stood on their banks and collected a paper boat,
which was a straw wrapper.
They call this litter and the ponds a mirage.
I called the shadows
After fourteen hours,
of broken A/C, crackling FM,
and one more coffee
from Flying J,
I crossed the Florida line
and parked at Leesburg Regional Medical Center.
Which is called LRMC.
I was squatting by the curb
swatting a halo of midges.
Retching on asphalt.
Sweating and heaving,
snotting like a bull, raging and whipping its head.
My humidity had begun to condense.
They call this the dew point.
A sign I’d reached my limit.
Lorrie Ness works as a psychologist and emerging poet. She draws inspiration for her writing through time outdoors. Writing is her means of refuge and connection. She has forthcoming publications at FRiGG, Sky Island Journal, SOFTBLOW, The Maryland Literary Review, The American Journal of Poetry, Rosebud and the Big Windows Review.