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BITUMEN MAN

The road stubbles toes with blood;
Hot bitumen runs, where cars surge past
tyre-tramp and piston march, tyres of rolling anthracite,
their windows black blank one-way glass.
They lay tar here: the flame burns
In flares of sun, the workers
Sweat, swear and shovel with a scrape of rust.
The cars blast past, they are going
Somewhere, somewhere, nowhere. Gone.
Grass seed clogs tar silence.
Air throbs: there shimmer out of the haze
Of short horizons where the road melts in mirage
Four riders: the fevered illusion hardens
To goggled reality and a glitter of chrome
Which javelins with sunlight.
The world boils to thunder then they are
gone.
Lance light still purples in thirst eyes.

Copyright © 1975, 2004 Hugh Cook

Picture of front cover of ARC OF LIGHT poetry collection by Hugh Cook.

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