Jeanette Lynes

'Got a Hunting Knife?' I Love Asking This
(Rolla, Near Dawson Creek, B.C.)

Frontier town              single swagger of street                      I’m alive here,
                                                                                         mile zero.

‘Got a hunting knife?’ – best question I’ve
                                                              ever posed
                                                              (‘got the time’ only takes a girl
                                                              so far,
                                                              what’s your
                               theoretical frame
                                                              query of all.)

Two men brandish
knives from their levis – one says              be careful,
                                                                       one doesn’t.
I long to leave my mark. Carve words beside a poet
gone before. (The angel who owns this bar allows writing on walls, understands wanting to say something
                                    before last call). I carve, cast shavings
                                    beneath my name. Shavings like a fine
                                    species of snow. I’m
                                                                                           alive here, am
                                                                                           for once
                                    someone I can
                                                          respect: a drifter           
                                    with a borrowed blade.