How the West Was Lost

© Matthew Word Bain

there used to be half of an old car from the 1950s
projecting from the side of one of these buildings
over a parking lot covered in wild, hungry vines
creeping over and slowly consuming a whole host
of mysterious objects of unimaginable provenance
like a safari park for plants and large scale antiques
while the building was home to a busy tattoo parlor
at least, that was what it seemed like as I walked by,
fascinated as ever by the way this bygone boom town
can take on iteration after mutable iteration and still,
eke along as it may, stay busted and never booming

and so, given the Panic of 1893’s impact on Basic City,
a failed wheat crop in far away Argentina sowed seeds
that have been reaped here every year for 128 of them
thus long predating the most recent demonstration
of what a small world we have made for ourselves