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Sleeping Beaten

A name wasn't what they called me.
What they called me identified me by the colour of my skin.
The colour of mud. The colour of faded, lead-based paint.
The paint on a broken, battered old truck.
I felt drawn to it.
Out in a mossy, mushy field of broken dreams alone.
It sat long enough to sink into the pungent, thick mud. Still, it cut a
     menacing shape in the dim light.
Wind rustling what little grass and sticks managed to claw skywards.
Plodding toward it through the muck I thought of hunting in the marshes.
I imagined it heading toward someone on an empty country lane.
The last set of headlights they'd ever see coming out of the night.
A night similar to this? The landscape illuminated by moonlight and memories.
An unusual chill to the air for this time of year.
As if the warmth of the world had no reason to come into this field near
     this junked out, forgotten wreck.
The smell of soil mixed with the perfume of rot, oxidizing metal and in my
     imagination, the faintest hint of denim.
Peeking inside the window I tasted the dust of time and motor oil.
Oil that long ago leaked into the ground.
The vintage smells accelerated my imagination.
Till I thought the headlights would blaze to life.
Round yellow eyes in a dark metal face.
Grill twisting into a painful smile.
Suddenly lurching to drag me into the rusty earth.
The musty air seemed dead. No living thing could be heard or seen.
The crown jewel of a family of ghosts.
Slowly driving itself into the ground.  

Melissa Moose: North American published author of articles, short
stories, poems, reviews, essays, and eulogies. Melissa writes from
a funny, educational, insightful, sharp and unique perspective. Her
pieces are diverse and fearless; she isn't afraid to gather research
from real life. Let's face it. When your life is one big joke, you
become a comedian. Melissa is best known for interesting hobbies,
exotic jobs, being fired from a reality show on the Discovery channel
and eliciting laughter from South America, Canada, 33 US states,
England, and Scandinavia. She does not reside with any of her
"1,000 lonely husbands". Visit her

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Previously published in
Calgary Poetry Magazine:
"Sweetgrass Elegy: Oral Tradition in Verse" by Rich Rodgers.

Published June 29, 2020

Poets of Western Canada Contest #2 - First Place

Sleeping Beaten

by Melissa Moose
(Courtenay, British Columbia, Canada)
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