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CMXIClement Jun 21
I met you there, your face was luminous.
Your presence filled the room.
We instantly connected with
The feeling of butterflies between us.

I had to move, but we kept in touch.
We talked for hours at a time.
Through the telephone, text and Myspace.
The feeling was divine...

The months had past, and we made plans.
Months turned to a year, I grew impatient.
I wanted to see you, but you were far.
I was sick and tired of waiting.

The last conversation we had
We spoke about flowers.
                                  Your favorite is pink roses.                                     
A light came on in those early hours....

Why AM I waiting?
At 3 A.M. I grabbed my checkbook.
Grabbed my coveralls, and some boots.
I didn't check the weather station, probably should have looked...

I started off on foot, from Manito, Illinois.
A mile down had second thoughts.
But the thought of you kept me strong,
Through the moments I felt distraught.

I didn't tell you I was coming.
I wanted to surprise you.
I knew that you would be overjoyed.
And we'd see our whole plan through.

Occasionally I'd get a ride,
But often times I walked.
I'd hitch a ride with random truckers,
But we seldom ever talked.

I was focused on the destination.
I was fixated on our reunion.
It almost felt like a dream would be fulfilled.
I could't know the heartache looming.

It took me sixteen hours to get to I-70.
That runs right through Ohio.
I collapsed on the freeway from exhaustion.
And the wind began to howl.

Walking miles in the wrong direction,
A blizzard was coming through.
My inner thighs were seizing up.
As the vindictive, and cold wind blew.

It took me twenty-four hungry, sleepless hours.
But I had finally made it there.
I went to a market, and shopped for your flowers.
Then I saw them and I just stared-

THERE WAS ONE  BOUQUET OF PINK ROSES LEFT!

I snatched them up triumphantly.
We were meant to be together!
The last day was frozen hell.
But the thought of you was splendor.

I met up with you, and you were shocked!
I finally gave you those flowers!
We went to your house and talked a bit.
But I felt a strange feeling for hours...

It was crazy to think I was talking to you!
And talking to you in person,
And I got to meet your boyfriend!
What?  Yeah... but the situation worsens.

I was so hurt I couldn't feel,
I was utterly broken and derelict.
She said you live in another state for a reason,
And you're not what I expected.

It was a massive blow to me,
I put so much of my heart out there.
For a while it solidified
The notion that women can't care.

I felt I was cursed and unlovable,
That I would never be enough.
To think that my gesture couldn't win her heart,
It was a deep and festering cut.

But....

"Have enough courage to trust love once more,
And always once more."
Those words are never truer,
Than to those who hurt before.

When you go through enough,
You become brave, no longer fearing pain.
Heartache is not a deterrent,
When you know what there is to gain.

The world won't change me,
I won't be controlled by fear.
I'm a bleeding heart, and always will be,
Through the blood and sweat and tears.

My greatest strength is the love I give,
To lend the keys to the soul of a lover's coffer.
My greatest weakness is the love I give,
And what I'm willing to offer.
Merry Jun 2019
I’m not lonely
But these roads are
Teeming with ants and birds soaring above
I drive on by, past them all and the clouds too

I’m not lonely
But this car is, this heart is
I miss the days when it was the other way around
When I had someone to chauffeur me

I dream of you
Standing in the tall yellow grass
Thumbs up and a cheeky grin
I don’t drive on by

I dream of letting you in
You laugh at the CDs I keep
All by your feet
But you like the music anyway

I ask of you, “Where you headed?”
You just laugh
And my cheeks turn red
But it’s not because of the summer sun

I sing with you
And you love the lyrics
To these old rock and roll songs
But we don’t part ways

I kiss you
Maybe not then
Behind a grimy windshield
But eventually

We don’t part ways
Instead, we keep each other company
In this dinged up white car
On grey-blue lonely roads

But you don’t exist
Not outside my mind
Not outside my heart
Not outside my words

So, I implore you,
That when we meet
I want our story to be
Of a happily ever after
And not a Twilight Zone episode

So,
Mister Hitch Hiker,
Do you reckon I can give you a lift?
Graff1980 Jul 2018
He’s been on the road
coming home
from
Arizona flagstaff
wearing his
jury rigged knapsack
with plastic
and cloth bags
strapped together
by an orange cord.

Sixty something,
tan skinned,
and missing teeth,
I find him
on the off ramp
as I head out
to work.

Sign says Springfield
but he is trying to
get back to
Chicago.
I almost pass him by,
but I remember
a younger guy,
the good man
I used to be.
He asks me to be
kind again.

I tell him
I’ll drop him
halfway there,
but he offers
a traveler’s perspective
and excellent conversation
so, I take him as far as I am going.

We roll in
just in time
for him to miss
the storm coming,
and part with
a handshake
and goodwill,
I forgot how good
that feels.
Brian Mangels Jan 2018
I’m here to capture birds!
Exclaimed the hiker in the back
We’d made the call to pick him up
Along our dusty track

He spoke at quite a volume
And his statement had me fear
Just what kind of character
Was riding with us here

And it was with due concern
We were alone it did occur
As upon our exploration
Of the great outback it were

What does he do with birds?
I thought to myself and friend
By her glance I saw that she’d
Considered the same end

Perhaps he’s meaning humans
When he speaks to us of birds
Playing time to make a strike
Misleading with his words

We best get to the bottom
I don’t like the sound of this
And who the hell captures birds?
There is something here amiss

Tell us more dear hiker
For we don’t understand
Do you mean your taking photos
Of birds in this great land?

Again he answers loudly
Cameras are no match
Birds don’t sit still, so with his eyes
He considers it a catch

Things become much clearer
And I feel somewhat a fool
He’s just an honest birdwatcher
Doing it old school

And he’s from a foreign country
Dutch I hazard the guess
Are you from the Netherlands?
He replies a booming yes!

The man has quite the passion
He’s travelled very far
Just for our birds, first by plane
And lately in our car

But we are in the outback
What on earth brought you here?
Twas by the train with a few stops
For rare birds that I could peer

This hiker most impressive
Tell us more of what you’ve seen
Speak of rare birds you’ve captured
And places that you’ve been

I have been to Epping!
Loud and proud he is again
I stayed with a friend
And caught your fairy wren

I have been to Capertee
And nothing could be sweeter
Than spotting a rare endangered
Regent Honeyeater

I’ve been to Lake Menindee
Full it’s quite the site to see
But pretty rainbow bee eaters
Are what appealed to me

Outside of Broken Hill we were
When our paths converged
We to spot rare flowers
Him to capture birds

We reached his sanctuary
And dropped him at the gate
Sorry that we couldn’t join
The day was getting late

We made for sculptured sunset
He waved grateful, on his own
As we drove off, we wondered
How the hell would he get home?
Richard Grahn Dec 2017
Standing at the edge of a pulsing highway, thumb extended, a lighthouse beacon under an early sky, raining hues of blue. A meadowlark stops to chirp, waiting for a ride on the next gentle breeze to somewhere. Grass whispers to the pavement. Gravel crunches under foot. Speeding cars drift slowly by on this never-ending road to nowhere, leaving their noxious gases floating, polluting the stillness of the morning air. Getting from here to there is a gas.

license plates fade
into the horizon...
dusty shoes
This is my first attempt at Haibun. Critique welcome and thanks for reading. Changed the haiku after original posting.
Autumn Stott Nov 2017
It goes something like this:
You spend years clawing through the hearts of men, one drunken night at a time. When you wake up in the mornings, you kick them out with one last kiss, and pretend you haven't forgotten their names already. You walk into the kitchen, pour yourself a cup of stale coffee, decide caffeine just isn't going to cut it, and crack open a beer instead. You stare blankly at the dust particles dancing around in the sunlight and wonder how long it would take to count them all.
One-
Two-
Three-
You get to one hundred and give up.
You spend the rest of the morning wondering when things got this bad.

It goes something like this:
You get in the shower. Shave your legs. Wash your hair. Conceal your imperfections, coat your lips bright red. You look in the mirror and realize you don't know the person looking back anymore. That is your face. Those are your green eyes. Your crooked teeth. But it is not you. You stare at your reflection so long that the room around you becomes a blur. Your heartbeat begins to race but you cannot stop. You keep staring. Keep analyzing. Keep wondering when you became a stranger to your own body. When you finally snap out of it, you decide to run.

It goes something like this:
You pack your bags. Some socks. A pack of cigarettes. A bottle of whiskey. Just the necessities. And you run. You run and you run and you don't dare stop to look back. You don't want to change your mind. It's four in the afternoon and you're supposed to be at work. You almost feel bad for not showing up. Almost.

It goes something like this:
You get to the edge of a town that hasn't felt like home for years, and you take it all in one last time. You can't help but smile. You're finally free. You put your thumb in the air until a familiar face stops. He asks where you're headed. You tell him you don't care where you go, as long as it's beautiful. And this time, you promise not to forget his name.
Alex Hoffman Sep 2016
Droplets of sweat flattened on our foreheads under the weight of a mid-August sun—flattened into ovals of sticky sodium, catching specks of stray dirt swept into the air from the passing semi’s and transport trucks, whipping the wind into torrents of chalky highway dust.

Pressed high against the skies curved plain, we used our thumbs to browse the passing cars like pages of an anthology enclosed by a narrow spine of asphalt.

But when one pulled onto the shoulder and we approached the passenger side window, we too were ****** with the expectation and appeal of a library—mutually eager in the labour of conversation for the currency of experience.

For a moment, as the prairie receded in the side mirrors, our car became the baseline of a frantic cardiogram, crowded by the landscape of rising granite walls and low-hanging canyons, and the space between our separate lives closed like parallel lines drawn by gravity to a magnetic core.

We pushed our destination west, as far as it would go, safe on the heels of expectation. In motion the passing towns crackled like neurotransmitters firing signals over axons of black asphalt. But each time the car slowed to release us, one more they faded into a rancid stasis, that, once more, we aimed only to depart.
After a summer hitchhiking across Canada.
The man beside me, he spoke in staccato sentences – as if his lips had forgotten the shape of words.

He said he’d been walking a long time, with a hungry thumb stuck out into the road, grasping for the wind beside passing cars. With tired eyes he watched them move on and blur into the faraway horizon.

He’d spent many days out there beneath the meat-eating sun, hoping to find himself in the shade. By night, he slept beneath blankets of stars and dead leaves.

A ghosted-out drifter upon the loneliest roads, appearing only in the transient headlights, and then gone.

I asked him where he was headed; he said it wasn’t what pulled him, but what pushed him instead. There was no beckoning light. He said the shadows, they snapped at his heels, and there was something in the deep lines upon that weather-blown face, like country roads – and I believed him, and kept my foot down upon the pedal.

He said a lot of things, in that strange, broken way. He said a lot of things for the longest time, and then for a longer time still, said nothing at all.

I’m not sure which was worse.
Mira Lamb Oct 2014
When backpacking, there are certain
rules that everyone knows like
take less than you can carry;
   you’ll pick up things as you go.
Be careful when hitchhiking;
   follow your gut instinct. Always.
Stick to your budget;
   you don’t wanna run dry in Kansas.

What no one actually tells you is:
   Don’t fall in love
      with a town or
      with a boy in a town.

Oops.

A boy who is settled and nestled in a town is dangerous.

The other roaming, free-loving boys are fine, because
   they understand and you understand
   that, like a Lynyrd Skynyrd song, your
   both freebirds who must be traveling on.
These boys are easy to love and set free.

Townies, on the other hand, are like rose-colored poison
which seeps into your every thought,
   but then you don’t really mind.

They show you that their quaint little town
doesn’t just look like magic.

   It is magic.

They show you that there’s something beautiful in
   greeting the mailman with
      “how’s the wife?”
   the charming town diner
      where the pie is county-famous
   the declaration of love on the water tower
      written in red spray paint.

The boy shows you how to fall in love with a town,
and in the town you fall in love with the boy.


They should start printing warning labels on backpacks:
      WARNING: don’t fall in love with a boy
      who is settled and nestled in a pint-sized town


because he will clip you wings.
just wrote today
trying to get back into my writing groove (and I need to flush all the ****** writing out of my system)
(starting with this piece)

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