not to the store. that’s silly.
it doesn’t have a driver’s license,
and without legs to walk
it would obviously have to drive.

no. it is running out, but not in that way.

my pen is empty of its gasoline.
it sputters along this page.
leaving scratched marks where words
should be, leaving dotted lines
where letters should be,
leaving the open road
my pen pulls over to the median.

having run on empty for too long

like a Seinfeld episode I once saw
where Kramer pushes to test
how far an empty gas tank will go

i am stranded on this page with miles
before the nearest filling station
miles of white landscape before me
with nothing but this suddenly useless tool
some unwieldy neolithic invention
thousands of years ahead of its time.

a rock scratcher, they might call it.
a dirt drawer. a stick. or with some irony, pointless,
before tossing the shiny plastic thing into a ditch.

Markus Egeler Jones graduated from Eastern Kentucky University‚Äôs MFA program — the Bluegrass Writer’s Studio. He teaches writing at Lincoln University in Jefferson City, Missouri. His short fiction and poetry can be found in many journals. His first fiction novel, How the Butcher Bird Found Her Voice, will be published in 2017 with Five Oaks Press.