Technicians of the Sacred shed feathered garb for disposable gowns and regular pay, where roadrunners rot in the sun--no diesel power, no CB squawk--lopping like tireless lung-gom-pa, attention trained on a long-dead star.


At the close of the Civil War, teenaged boys—"Naturally good, sound to the core," in big floppy hats, leather chaps, high-heeled boots with jingle-jangle spurs, bellies filled with red beans and coffee grounds, maneuvered ponies along spooky routes...


Where Cross and Pentagon, the mercurial god is a bright red truck lumbering coffins through towns where trains don't stop anymore.