My mother worked the Tilt-A-Whirl
at the Jefferson County carnival-
or so someone said.
The rock-ribbed bass of generators
underneath the calliope
tooting “Goodbye Cruel World”
over carpet clowns, spec girls, and an armless
knife-thrower retreating to his tent between shows.
Let the people point at me and stare-
to the edge of town
is a bike ride,
or the Shoot me out of a cannon! trip of a lifetime.