[logo: Kansas Heritage Group]

Beats In Kansas: The Beat Generation in the Heartland


by Roxie Powell, 1978

My dad wanted his picture
taken in front of the car
so we snapped him
felt cattleman's hat
relaxed, arm over hood decoration
looked like he had his mind
in futures

then he herded us back in
the car and drove into the ditch
up into the field and started
bumping the car across furrows
dust constant
empty space wheat heads
on the window ledge
heat filling the car
we drove for miles this way
he smiled into the rearview mirror
watching his birthmark
grow from purple to red
"This'll make 20 bushels."

My mother held herself big
on her seat--she didn't look
at me she said, "You pay that last
note--you put some money in the bank?
I need a new Electrolux."

"Sure,"he said.

© 1978 Roxie G. Powell; Page © 2013 George Laughead
Return to: Roxie Powell Index Page
or to: Beats In Kansas