now that the world is ending
in the scrape of steel and the churn of the wheel
the turn of the sky and the hole in the face
of a child and the ocean reeling

and we set it up!
we built it with the hands of our minds and the hammers of our lines
you see, the beast's been driving me
my back is bending
but the world has an ending

out on the edge of the world in the landfill foothills
we could dig out a home
the beast won't bother with us there
where the rats are kind among assorted plastic things

paul, jacob, katherine, we'll slip out under the night
down the road's wicked wending
you see, the rail's been riding me
but the rail has an ending

the holy tree became a fist
I gather my fingers
I made my peace

how will the finger claw?
the results are in
julian, could you anchor me to your treehouse
wheeled about
dorothy, with your big coat, ashen hair
said, "if you want peace there, then put it there."

ran into a goat man in a dusty, bureaucratic suitcoat
on the corner of jefferson and main
he said:

"now that the world is over
why don't we build another one, new and improved in every way?
environmentally friendly! we'll make a farm
grab your songs, take my furry arm and come along!"

there was child's laughter in his teeth
and a fire in his throat, that cloven foot, crazy frenchman
the trickydevilgoatman





peter j hochstedler South Bend, Indiana

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