Washboard Road

This rutted track
with pot holes and cuts,
makes for rough travel.
Perhaps I should have
chosen a shorter course,
taken the highway.
Out on this spur
of lonely landscape
with wire fence
and barren fields,
two coyotes lope from cover,
a raptor watches.
Bouncing on the gravel
I wonder at my choices,
of wayward paths
and threadbare answers
yet the hawk’s eye catches me,
the coyotes’ freedom
in their winter coats.
Keep going I tell myself
rolling open the window,
just over the next rise,
further down the washboard road.




photograph by James Frid






















Reading of “Washboard Road” with music by Norm Smookler


22 Responses to “Washboard Road”

    Bravo, Brother…

  2. Michel says:

    Beautiful creation and the reading make it more vivid. Thanks for sharing.

  3. You have captured my thoughts of late as I reflect on my life. Thank you for putting in a beautiful frame. And Norm’s music is perfect and profound.

  4. Jack Lavelle says:

    Been on that road m’sef. Once lived in a ole shack out there…

  5. David Banner says:

    Been there, done that!

  6. Eric Dunn says:

    This is such a wonderful piece during this time. Thank you!

  7. Athena Coleman says:

    So, so beautiful and poignant, Don. This one is my new favorite.

  8. Susan Bennett says:

    Reminds me of my mothers favorite poem by Robert Frost ..The Road not Taken..
    Thank you Don, poignant, evocative..palpable…

  9. Elizabeth O Nunn says:

    I know that road so well. No smooth, slick highways for me The hunter hawk and the trickster coyote still beckon…”Come on…you can do it one more time. It’s just bumps in the road.” So, once again, I wheel off into the rutted unknown that is so familiar. Because I know…it is those roads that have the best guideposts.

  10. Tom Figel says:

    Don, if you were only to write a single poem this year, this is the one. Thank you for the magnificence of it.

  11. Don, thank you, I love the imagery this conjures up in me. It is I think the mystery we love, the not knowing for sure, the uncertainty, that provides the edge and keeps us from complacency and life remains so delicious.

  12. Patrick says:

    Wow – you constantly amaze me – like Kris Kristophsens lyrics – “taking every wrong direction on my
    lonely way back home”

  13. Veronica Lim says:

    To take the easy way, or to take the way of adventure and discovery!
    Thank you, Don!

  14. John Walsh says:

    We’ve eyed and waved to each other on this Road, Don. The going is slow, but the realizations profound. Thank you for articulating the Road so sublimely.

  15. Stan Grindstaff says:

    Beautiful pic Jim—beautiful music Norm—beautiful cadence Don—beautiful day moving on…

  16. Geoff Tisch says:

    I love those kinds of roads. Always interesting and full of adventures. Much moreso than the slick, straight, boring, sleep inducing paved highways. Give me a tall ship, and a star to guide me home – is all I need.

  17. Maria Frid says:

    The wayward paths are always my choice. Your beautiful expression of those rough roads add to my pulse rate…………..exhilarating!

  18. Edward Haimes says:

    “True love travels on a gravel road”, is a line in a song written I think by the Highwaymen. Life just doesn’t fit into a neat box and why struggle with what you have no control over. The wheel of life is turning, enjoy the journey. Thanks Don for the beautiful imagery.

  19. James Frid says:

    Traveling along the highway is no journey at all. A voyage worth doing can be found more easily in the bounce of the rutted road where predator and prey play their dangerous ways. Thanks, Don.

  20. Eleanor Gill Milner says:

    In the words of some one wiser than I…. You took the road not taken, and that has made all the difference. Loved this one, Don. El

  21. John Connor says:

    Yes, Don, yes. Very much this.

  22. The endless prairie is inhabited,
    and Life whispers to us everywhere,
    even on that less travelled spur.

    the denizens of that lonely barren world
    communicate their presence upon the wind,
    and suddenly we know,
    we are never quite alone.

    I really enjoyed the atmosphere of Washboard Road, Don.
    Norm’s understated yet poignant music is perfect.

    Write on…write on.

Leave a Reply