The Poetic License

On the poetic license it is the nineteenth century.

A ship named Conventional Poetry
is just sinking on the horizon.

Nearby in a lifeboat
Form and Vision shake hands holding the strings
of balloons between their lips.

In the balloons are words of enthusiasm about sailing to America,

the country where dawn is breaking and the Muse collapses
on the grave of Washington,
naming the states.

Her balloon is so large it grazes the face of the farmer
plowing far off in the field.
He goes right on waving,

songs come out of the mouths
of his wife and children,

out of the mouths of pioneers watching the figure of Columbia
lift off the prairie and rise
half out of her robe.

Oh Burgeoning Art
Oh Poetry Yet To Be, they say,
pointing to her breasts

that part the clouds,
pointing to the clouds,

pointing to my name inscribed across the West in longhand.

-Wesley McNair