I once burned a bridge and
since it was terribly fun
I burned another one. And another. And another.
Quite a few, actually.
It was a rush watching them burn but after they’d all collapsed
I was landlocked, unable to cross any
decent-sized river on my island that winter.
And winter was cold. When you run out of rocks
so you can’t even ignite a spark, let alone a flame,
you yell to the next island at some brooding
Paul Simon to see if you can borrow a few of his;
Yet he can’t hear or just pretends not to.
Maybe those bridges were more beautiful than
the orange flames and crystal-grey wet-
ashes you made them become. On second thought —
A burning suspension bridge is just such a glorious site,
its parts, once nearly solid as gold, now splash as firebombs into water.
Nevertheless into your mind inexplicably appears something you once read,
Love must be as much a light as it is a flame,
Bringing to the fore the sudden paradox you’re in —
Or is that an aphorism? God damn you Thoreau.
So I built another bridge.
Starting it was easy, but after months I was down to just a few trees
and the bridge had to end. If a bridge ends,
what good is it then? What good is a pier?
The bridge idea has now been simplified into that of a boat; should have
thought of that to begin with. I will build a boat
and launch off the pier
setting a course to row to Rock Island to beat
the crap out of Paul Simon and steal all his rocks and wood:
He could have shared when I called, almost desperate, since I’m sure
he has a boat of his own, with all that money, and he probably
didn’t even build it himself.
Can’t wait to set fire to that pier when I get back —
A pier’s worthless anyway unless you have someone to share it with,
just an extension of the sand on the beach.
Seth William Wells has been called a poet by at least 4 or 5 people. He also writes essays, or creative nonfiction, and he knows how to blog. It’s the wave of the future! He’s been published a few times before Mason’s Road, but it was only for book reviews. Does that count? He likes the idea of wine production, and also drinking wine, and long walks on the beach as well as staring at sunsets for hours. Almost always he sleeps through the sunrises though. Currently, Seth is employed as a bartender and bar manager, and during the academic year he attends school as an M.F.A. candidate at Minnesota State University, Mankato.