MPH and Other Road Poems

MPH and Other Road Poems

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Author: Ed Roberson

Editor: Andrew Peart

Publisher: Verge Books (2021)

In 2015, while, in his words, "dismantling my house in New Jersey and preparing it for sale," Ed Roberson discovered in some envelopes in his attic a manuscript he thought lost, drawn from the experiences of the summer of 1970, when the poet, along with two friends, rode cross-country from Pittsburgh to San Francisco and back on two BMW motorcycles. The recovery of this manuscript—over forty years later—alerted Roberson to the fact that he had been relating to its material ever since, yielding for him work that "calls across the span of a lifetime." MPH is Roberson's epic, serial road poem, decades in the making, stamped with and guided by the talisman of its title. "one thing visible every day / any time 24/7 / for 3 months 8000 miles / was mph // on the speedometer. / a small petty thing. / a pin. / down of a larger / limiting. // a sighting an ideograph / even more than a picture beyond word."