Three Poems

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Kira Walker/Staff

Cartoon Sunrise

A kid walking barefoot to Los Angeles rarely moves faster than traffic. The wind comes, and is like students rushing to class. Silence is swiftly abandoned.

In winter, the hissing and fangs on the low-slung rails can only be the electrical towers, their turf doubling as soccer fields and flyways.

Billboards. A wandering bat. Thin and colorless machinery.

San Bernardino is one 8.0 away from looking like your neighbor’s yard – with the fake owls and poppies growing on their side. We could cap-and-trade envy but do you know what will happen? Edwardian Balls – all the way from Vegas to here.

Eros throws darts at the moon.

Mother Mary always beats me at dominos.

Like you said, these streets are lovely.

I’m sad and nothing’s wrong with me.

 

Versus

Fontana vs. Bloomington.

More taxes, sidewalks, street lights vs. parties and gangs.

Mechanized Fontana P.D. vs. Highway Patrol in khakis and wanna-be sombreros.

Parking in the yard vs. the garage.

Fire hydrants vs. roads ending in sky.

Murky dawn vs. the salivating song of the Ice Cream Man.

(The loudest thing) Enrique playing Call of Duty vs. a Chevy Impala playing Kendrick Lamar.

Sirens, hoots, howling wind vs. growling, purrs, toilet flushes.

Gas stations vs. liquor stores.

Feathers vs. chasm.

Chasm vs. feathers.

Hills vs. fields.

Fans vs. air-conditioning.

Blur vs. Atmosphere.

A clogged sink vs. potholes in the road.

Kids blocking the driveway vs. Fernando leaving the fridge open.

A power box vs. poles and wire.

Afternoons of machines idling, humming vs. mornings smelling of dirt.

In both eggs, used cars and blankets sold on the side of the road.

Go outside to talk on the phone

in the cascade of the freeway

houses never buildings

 

Fontana

Charcoal grey palm fronds in the wind. Hills, Metal factories, rocky and dirty property disappearing with the sunset. A sudden engine sounds in the atmosphere, the subconscious. Signage for legal pills, body help. Educational pavements sing, house after house after beautiful commercials after wildfire after graffiti washed by power hose / below the Jurupa hills

Joshua Escobar studies in MFA program at Bard College and the Graduate School of Journalism at the University of California at Berkeley.