"Where were you when the world stopped turning?"~Alan Jackson~
On the way up the mountain,
the paved road seems foreign
among the evergreens.
She can remember walking this way.
Back then the trails were narrow,
the granite rocks sharp.
There is something, a touch of panic,
in the voices on the radio
that makes her listen.
When she gets out of her car
at the mountain-top, she almost believes
that the mist in the valley comes
from sudden disintegration.
Perhaps the earth has opened up
and swallowed everything,
the houses tumbling down like pinecones,
roads collapsing, breaking off in segments.
"The end of the world,"
she read once, drinking tea in the window
of a café in New York,
"will come when the last person
on Earth is gone."
The land seems to hold its breath,
the water in its veins still flows,
but slowly. She looks at the rising dust
and laughs into the stillness.
It is a mile down.
The first rain falls
as she flies,