I jogged the shoulder of a service road in Hattiesburg steaming summer
stopped short to collect empty cigarette packs printed on the side five Marlboro miles
that I would rip off and stuff in my sock— sometimes on good days I’d get close to fifty
miles from drivers who'd roll their windows down and toss their empty trash—
like plucking pennies from a fountain
saving ten thousand for an argyle Dopp kit from Philip Morris
that has endured many, many more miles across states and overseas.
See, I am sending an angel ahead of you to guard you along the way . . . Exodus 23:20
Not that you need one for your mother covers these southern shores
in case I slip, this card under your door, Michael will do
especially in these infant, toddler years though listen to your father
I'm geared for adolescence and will tackle puberty, your teens . . .
always though there will be Michael like music—that jazz through speakers
as school days offer Spring break then summer breeze in early May—
largemouth bass lurk beneath lily pads—alligators sun on the bank.
Beau Boudreaux teaches English in Continuing Studies at Tulane University in New Orleans. His first book collection of poetry, RUNNING RED, RUNNING REDDER, was published in the spring of 2012 by Cherry Grove Collections. He has published poetry in journals including Antioch Review and Cream City Review, also in anthologies along with The Southern Poetry Anthology.