Her birthday, then upon the dawn
I left my snowy mountain-peaks
and headed through the plains,
the town that has a body-name
then icy snare that held me where
mom's stories live and kids still
rhyme obscenely with the monarchy.

Slept that night on dad's dime
and the morning slowed me down,
but not enough to interrupt
my upstream flow to Fox's run,
with diesel and the setting sun,
past flakes and flashing lights to
rest where plow-trucks own the night.

Where his trek ended, mine resumed:
I pushed on through a brighter day,
clothes-changing in the driver's seat,
a burger from the classic chain
then counting time and kilometers
till social studies shipped me off
to sister's air-filled guestroom bed.

Before I left the capital zone
she gifted me that mattress;
I stuffed it in my brimming car
and made a final day of roads
to Eastern shore, where traffic
got me late for dinner, but home
in time to taste the windy Spring.

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