Didn’t want to come to this hole,
but did want to see you again,
in boots, happy.
This long, long weekend goes
slow when it’s just you and I
and thirty thousand plaid backs
bobbin’ and stompin’, singing,
stewing the grass into mud
kicked up our faded blue calves.
Guitars drift along drumbeats
over our heads, dragging the first lyrics
you sent me, before it all happened
as it happened.
We’re exposed in slivers
in the crowd, as Blake Shelton’s
trollin’ for souls. Tebey’s trollin’
for Toby, Ruttan, Rhett and whisky.
Whitney Rose, Autumn Hill,
Underwood, Hicks, Kicks and
Brooks, Farr gone along Emerson
Drive. Johnny Cash walks the Florida-
Georgia Line, Smith’s in Dallas,
Stellas, and Kira Isabella. Kacey,
Mackenzie, Paul, and Porter.
Pretty Girl, I say, take me to Church
and let me see you shake it for Jason
Aldean, Flatts, Ford, Bentley and Lambert,
Luke Bryan, Lee Brice, Brett, Blaine, Brant,
Bradley, and Bradbury, while Bamford
begs for One More Girl to end them all.
You wanted Sam Hunt, but Hunter
Hayes takes rain in the form of ice
to the eye, and I’m so grateful
it sends us to our tent
to pocket out the storm,
side by side in sleeping bags.
We play crib without the baby
and our hearts split as they
mend. Here comes the sun,
scorched again, shoulder to shoulder
we listen to our lives hummed out
on stage, and you won’t go on
the Ferris Wheel, I assume,
because it’s too romantic
and we’re just friends now.
Still look at us! Willing to do
the real love that comes after
we’ve let each other go.
This work is deliberate.
No travesty of chance
has laid us out.