The Iowa Review

from Prisoner’s Cinema

- Lisa Wells


On the seventh day I saw the concrete breached, the river returned to its original vein, and pulsing there slick and muscular multitudes of Coho winding north to spawn.

It was so.

I understood intuitivel­y, if the Coho are to return I must maim the developer’s trademark.

Now here comes the Prince of fractured libido and his purse dog, Fritz.

Here’s our man, the Viceroy of Bitumen also known as “He who bloviates well into the lunch hour”

Not quite a circle of hell, more like a coffee ring of restless feet treadling beneath a conference table

while the talking heads attached itinerize their suicidal mission: desertify the mountain, burn the slash.

I vow to banish these knucklehea­ds just as soon as I get born again.

In a scabby motel off I-80 amidst air-conditione­d doldrums the dream began

dream of the dance pole conductive of sun’s clockwise action and counterclo­ckwise action of moon-

gears of equal and opposite force manifest violet thunderhea­ds, lightning-crazed traveling out from the center in concentric rings to make a world.

Logic of resistance.

We will meet, in the road to Tar Sands a man of myriad chattering heads—

disordered, habituated to the freebased recrementa­l whee of implosion.

Who has for an opponent the meeting of middle class reformists.

You waiting for the thrill jockey to get his fill and climb down off us?

He will never get his fill. He will never climb down off us.

Just ask the kids at Fort Mac, where threshers undo the true name of Lake Athabasca.

Forgone, that we are all accomplice but it’s not too late to turn if you want to cool your heels here on earth.

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