This week they are painting
the North Gulfport water tower.
Every day it grows whiter
until it is the color of clouds,
and the clouds in the heavy sky
seem whiter still. To paint the tower
the workmen have erected
a scaffolding around the tank,
a radius of poles from which to hang
the ropes that pull them up.
From a distance, the scaffolding
is a diadem, the crown
on a monument—a glory
wreath. That is what I saw
as I drove the flat land—down
Highway 49—toward home.
Up close now, beneath it, I see
what I had not: a circle of thorns.
In Verse is supported by Public Radio Makers Quest 2.0, an initiative of AIR, the Association of Independents in Radio. This project is made possible with funding from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting and by a broadcast partnership with Studio 360 with Kurt Andersen.