My first summer in the house,
conceiving a suburban Zangarmarsh, a nighttime defense,
a lawn of gnomes and extra lives,
I let the mushrooms go as they may,
toadstools, Boletales, puffs and gills, from
old mulch and deep shadow under the oak,
six species advancing through the grass to the shade of the façade.
As an unkempt August ended, in gloves and mask,
I finally tended the yard, felt the drowsy snap
of each red cap pulled from the litter,
found spent puffballs home
not to sporelings but to maggots,
all thrown in with last autumn’s leaves,
mulch too rotten to salvage,
weeds too invasive to compost,
herbs too tender for the Georgia heat.
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… crashes when entering buildings in Goodsprings.
… crashes when entering or leaving the Strip.
… lags or freezes in Westside.
… stutters or lags randomly.
… crashes when entering or exiting areas.
— from “Fallout: New Vegas” bug reports
Few can rest in all of time at once —
Watchers, Auditors and Death —
so when set down both decades in the past
and a century in the future,
it is, perhaps, inevitable
for time to fall between its guy-wires,
escape its vault and vanish down,
flirt with pauses, wavering for moments
before following the easiness of ceasing.
I had wandered, observing, mapped the sweep
of the Strip, its lights and vigor a supernova
in the waste — I had worn my paths
from fort to safehouse — I had made
my name and my way.
Now, “Johnny Guitar” plays out like an hourglass’s
leavings, behind it just the insect
drone of hard drive, disc and fan —
controller still resonant
with the final shock of impact —
the view an inert ruin of sepia
beyond a lucky revolver.
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