A Poem by Keith Moul

A Nap at Rum River


          Who would not like to stop
          in the sun at Rum River and nap?


In Minnesota, flat terrain offers no surprise, but altitude

(called locally “geospatial extent”) seldom exceeds a tree.


Endemic soil fans look up and point, intriguing the tourists

who wrestle disorientation during upward gaze too high and

so topple to what tricksters at these altitudes call “just rest.”


Cold spring air leaks squealing, cat cries, into the troposphere;

winds slow, not to end winter, but to end tasteless redundancy.


By the way, I am neither native, nor a Vikings fan. If you repeat

what I say, someone here (although very nice people in general)

may try to sell your spleen to an organ hospital in Minneapolis.

I moved here to win a bet; I learned all these facts at first hand;

I did return home (I can’t reveal the location) every four months

or so to send anonymous reportage to the New York Times, not

once having my stories believed. So I’ve started hiking through

sunny Minnesota down the curlicue Rum River (check it out)

that will not permit compass direction; often stopping to nap.


If you read this poem, please be sure to then destroy it and live.


This poem first appeared in Mojave River Review.

Keith Moul’s poems and photos are published widely. Finishing Line Press released a chap called The Future as a Picnic Lunch in 2015. Aldrich Press published Naked Among Possibilities in 2016; Finishing Line Press has just released (1/17) Investment in Idolatry. In August, 2017, Aldrich Press released Not on Any Map, a collection of earlier poems. These poems are all from a new work about prairie life through U.S. history, including regional trials, character, and attachment to the land.


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