Sarah Warren

Blue Swallow Motel

It’s Christmas & you are not here.  
I’m alone with a single malt & the words 
Blue Swallow scrolled in electric blue cursive, 
MOTEL blocked in red. Strange, I do not feel 
alone. Hank, Johnny. Piñon smoke & Tucumcari sky. 

Once I was a dagger between your legs, the keeper 
of your secrets. Now my mouth is memory 
& silence. Look: 
                        this desert is a fat, dry cough. 
The motel lit on old 66 like no time has passed. 
A neon bird floats in cerulean lines, perched 
against black night. A tattoo on the chest 
of a restless one-night vagabond.

It was never enough for you to look 
so innocent in dreams. When night 
became too long & you hissed whiskey,
spat on that porch lit with cigarette ends. Strange, 
I did not feel. When your fist. When stairs & concrete 
met your pickled skull. Strange – I do not 
feel alone. This rosary. Double barrel. 

There is no sage to smudge 
these walls, this skin. 
Calloused hands. 
Devil mouth. 

Sarah Warren is a writer, musician, and professor. She has taught literature and writing classes and also given music lessons since 2003, and continues to gig around as a flutist and vocalist whenever possible. Sarah is currently working toward a Ph.D. in English at the University of North Texas in Denton, and though she has lived in Texas since 2006, she will always identify as a native Oklahoman. Sarah currently teaches English composition at the University of North Texas in Denton and at Richland College in Dallas. Her writing has appeared in Gravel and World Literature Today, and will also soon be featured in the forthcoming anthology Talking Back and Looking Forward: Poetry and Prose for Social Justice in Education (Rowan & Littlefield 2016).

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The views and opinions expressed throughout belong to the individual artists and may or may not coincide with those of the other artists (or editors) represented within the magazine. Hobo Camp Review supports a free-for-all atmosphere of artistic expression, so enjoy the poetry, fiction, opinions, and artwork within, read with an open mind, and comment wisely. Thanks for stopping by the Camp!