The Road to Acuna, by Catherine Bowman

The night we drive in is a snake

The snake at the edge of the schoolyard.

The ditch encircled by children.

The legend dug deep to the devil.


The place we discuss our childhood.

The place where we hum in the desert.

The ice melts away in the bucket.

The white lace of the hotel bed.


The smile that covers two lovers.

The lovers on their way to Acuna.

The glare on the rabbits, the rocks.

The headlights that blaze on the roadside.


The signs that all point to Acuna.

The panting road to Acuna.

The pot-bellied road to the border.

The spiraling storm to the city.


From “1-800-Hot-Ribs” by Catherine Bowman. (Gibbs Smith Publishers: $9.95.) Bowman is the first recipient of the Kate Tufts Discovery Award, given to a younger poet, under the auspices of the Claremont Graduate School. 1994 Reprinted by permission.