A Preserved Darkness

“The Long Road—Argilla Road, Ipswich,” ca. 1898-1912, by Arthur Wesley Dow. Color Woodcut. Art courtesy of the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

The world ends but the territory goes on. The world ends like the horizon, like the
curvature of the earth whether anyone believes it exists. The world ends & beyond its
end burns a signal fire human eyes cannot see, smoke noses cannot detect even
downwind. The world ends downwards & depends on where feet are placed, the
direction faced. The world ends in one direction—away from the territory, weather in its

Ryan Collins is the author of A New American Field Guide & Song Book. He hosts the SPECTRA Reading Series in Rock Island, IL where he lives.
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