There’s a ride, they say, that takes

A boy from the booths of red vinyl,

And the girls in their white blouses,

Away from the spatula scraped once more across the grill,

And all the paper hats soaked gray with sweat.

A ride in the summer night sky,

Four miles along the two-lane

To a turn off which weaves

Through the ruins of a city yet to be:

Great stones sliced and yanked and left

On the rims of the black quarries.

There were others before him,

And whether he knows them or not,

He’ll find them in the lantern’s glare with the bottle:

The liquid clear and pure which catches

The methane light.

He dives

And the searing glow in throat and belly

Is pulled inside out by the pool

Kept like ice in the jawbone of stone.

He is a white angel in the dark mire,

The pieces of the acrobat fallen,

Or just a clean child swimming skyward.

Breaking before where the remaining tower

Of a forgotten crane reaches into the sea of stars,

He is the lost child dizzy with dreams.