Mike James

E Pluribus

Every t-shirt he owned said something in Latin. He owned more than 11 t-shirts, but less than 23. When traveling on a train headed east from Portland, Oregon to Portland, Maine he tried to count the number of t-shirts. The train maintained a constant speed over mountains, canyons, rivers, and fields. He could never settle on a good number. It changed because he forgot and remembered different t-shirts each time. And there were distractions along the way: men on horseback, burning cities, and a wealthy variety of food trucks. The train lacked a dining car, but had a large vending machine stocked with food, drinks, piercing jewelry, and cigars. Smoking wasn’t permitted. The cigars wouldn’t light anyway. The best anyone could do was roll them in their hands to help stay a little warmer on days when snow was thick or the sun set early.

Mike James makes his home outside Nashville, Tennessee. He has published in numerous magazines, large and small, throughout the country. His many poetry collections include: Leftover Distances (Luchador), Parades (Alien Buddha), Jumping Drawbridges in Technicolor (Blue Horse), and Crows in the Jukebox (Bottom Dog).



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