There is an open field at the edge of town
where I lay in the tall grass
and looked down.
The windows of the whorehouse
the brass bed frame still there
against the pressed glass.
The peeling flowered paper on the walls.
People coming later found things:
belt buckles and round blades of saws
and green glass bottles.
The dark frame wood houses still stand
staggered on hills throughout this valley
and a few people come and walk and page
through the letters left behind that a bored
teenager pulls out in a thick, black binder.
As you stand before the photos of
stiff suited men
no woman to be seen just the rutted, muddied streets
and the wooden steps.
You think: there must have been women they loved here
women whose necks they studied
As they turned their face away in thought.
You have to believe in something to relieve the early snow