Wendy Drexler

Traffic Jam on the 405 North
by Wendy Drexler

inside the steel boxes | each little soul
is bantamweight | boxing
the timeline | each little soul is
brine | frightened | and hustling | oh people
sheathe each vanishing second in daisies

estimated time in traffic | fifteen minutes | the GPS says |
and what a mess we’ve made of us | five lanes wide |
the mass and rush of us | smog on the horizon |
exit to Manhattan Beach | Billboard:
CNN Money’s Best Place for the Rich and Single |

you in the KIA | you in the Jaguar | you in the pickup-truck
in front of me | your ladder strapped to sacks
of insulation | two or more of every you in every whizzing
car in the carpool lane | my husband and I
in our rented Impala | you | are a little soul carrying a corpse

Marcus Aurelius said | little soul LAX |
little soul listens to Bach | little soul sponges up
the minutes | Rabbi Zecker says the Torah is
God’s written word but God speaks
between the lanes |


Published in Cider Press Review, Volume 23, Issue 3.

Wendy DrexlerWendy Drexler’s second full-length poetry collection, Before There Was Before, was published by Iris Press in 2017. Her poems have appeared in Barrow Street, J Journal, Nimrod, Pangyrus, Prairie Schooner, Salamander, Sugar House, The Atlanta Review, The Mid-American Review, The Hudson Review, The Threepenny Review, and the Valparaiso Poetry Review, among others. Her work has been featured on Verse Daily and WBUR’s Cognoscenti and in numerous anthologies. She’s the poet in residence at New Mission High School in Hyde Park, MA, and programming co-chair for the New England Poetry Club.

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