The 2River View 26.3 (Spring 2022)

T. Clear

Every Marriage Needs a Trail of Crumbs

Every wife needs her own TV, my mother says
when I don't tell her my marriage is failing.
She knows anyway, dead certain
a television is the quick fix.

On the other hand, sudden death
can cure everything that ails a marriage,
though death isn't necessarily good
for what ails you, no matter your station

in life. My station's stuck on Wheel of Fortune,
like a Tarot reading gone wrong.
Spotlit, dumbstruck, my winning loot
zeroed out by the buzzer.

Every TV needs a good heave
off the front porch, says my neighbor, divorced,
as his boob tube shatters
into a billion electronic crumbs.

Four-Wheel Drive

for my brother, at 72

On a cliff-edge, snow deepening
at every turn, and night beginning
to damp down into the firs —
we had nowhere to go but home
after switch-backing mountainsides
hours in search of nothing, you
with a new truck, an urge to roam.

Your splitrock laugh when I suggested
there, we can turn around there
where the narrow track widened, barely,
the wheels of your International Harvester Scout
digging steadily forward and up.
I was ten and knew everything depended
on how nimbly I could leap free
before a skid-driven careen
into the end of my life

that didn't happen, of course.
And at that moment of not-happening
I couldn't foresee us 50 years later,
at my kitchen table, as if no time had elapsed
and we were just now, finally, finally back home
and sitting down to Sunday supper.

T. Clear is a founder of Floating Bridge Press. Her work has appeared in many magazines, including The American Journal of Poetry, Crannog, The Moth, Poetry Northwest, Sheila-na-Gig, and Terrain. A House, Undone is the 2021 winner of the Sally Albiso Award from MoonPath Press. Clear is an Associate Editor at Bracken Magazine. website

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