Nobody Gets Lost


Nobody found himself wandering

in a different century. He didn’t plan

on this—it is just where the plane

landed, right in a field. Imagine

his shock as he watched the luggage

being unloaded to donkey and cart,

wheels hardly even round, his bags

looked like the dead being

hauled away. The stench

should have tipped him off. When

he had built up a thirst, he noticed

there were no sinks or faucets,

no pipe work at all, just people

moping around, unable to rinse off

the filth of some recent war. At least

he saw a river nearby, and a well.

Really, all he wanted was a drink,

but at the river a dead horse

and a battalion of corpses floated past

from some unknown place

to some unknown place, and he couldn’t

drink at all. So he went to the well,

slowly let out the rope,

and as he looked down the opening,

he imagined himself

back home, smiling in Colorado,

thought of how all this travel

everywhere else

has destroyed his life there,

and then the bucket kissed

the surface, rippling over

that image, that face

lost like a coin.






Photo Source: Moot

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About Author

Timothy Kercher's manuscript “Nobody’s Odyssey” was recently selected as a finalist for the John Ciardi Prize for Poetry, and his translation of Besik Kharanauli’s long poem, “The Lame Doll,” is set to be published in the Republic of Georgia early next year. His poems and translations have appeared or are forthcoming in a number of recent literary publications, including Crazyhorse, Versal, The Dirty Goat, VQR, Asheville Review, upstreet, Guernica, The Minnesota Review and others. He now lives in Kyiv, Ukraine with his wife and twin daughters.


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