tiger tiger tiger
sis sis sis
boom boom boom
in the corner
where the dense remains of secrets earn rest, amygdaliform eyes open but closed, hard tuile fascia shell cracked and melting into jasmine ices, current currant skeleton sloughing skin like gray snow on fog-licked philly mornings. i’ve had my fill, alligators in bathrooms, gravy on the floor.
puella aeterna leaves the pier to find sweet dates, shriveled fatima fantasies plumping to reality. (just add water.) i will wait for you, andalusia pledged to that bitter soul so lost at sea, unable to drink.
now there’s lovage near the sand. congestive heart failure resolved, the shrinkadink rehydrates with jello beginnings. sipping from the rain, slow. eating from the sun, bright. coppertone shining, protecting from the distant hum of not good enough.
atta girl. at a stance. ataraxia. on her axis, nexus of lexis-nexis lexus google searches into the long night of uboat watches like a military post on the coast, line, hook and sink into the mouth of fish-fry monterey fantasy of you and me. no, not the other thing, the other other thing, the other white meat, when I was. where I was. what I was. scraped up off the basement floor, neverminding neverland just this once, james, son, cigarette breath, ferngully back seats and steamy recapitulations I miss. I’ve loved them all, their preppy princeton hoods, stopping and turning around to remember what is possible in the cool midnight air cutting with the ax of ataraxia.
to the lees, please, eyes red for red eyes and americanos bugeyed, bugging out with paranoia panic for something long forgotten, misplaced, imagined. across the table pepper shaking, hands shaking, nerves mainlining to philadelphia’s society stoop, quaker’s oats and steel-cut jaws, sharp, cutting straight to the point. shame lives bright on the surface but so easily brushes away, plucked errant hairs from the nubs of the comb in webs all over the car, static clinging to dry-cleaned slacks, wool over the eyes, red eyes. hot water runs cold today. what’s red is blue. what’s sad is true. plastic bristles catch bits of scalp, scratching the surface of sense reality as if to herald the inevitable tug of its tangled return.
popcorn jumps out of its shell as it burns, then dissolves in saliva as the kernel of truth digs and gets stuck between two molars til it bleeds, shard digging into your gums pink and already puffy from a deep floss up in the crevices, in, to the side, to the other side, click, out, til the crap gunk comes out—that examined plaque of my life out there in the open, on that tight rope of cinnamon string. move on to the next cavity. this one has been filled.
the distant lem of cornbread rising, past the garaged alleys where footsteps clack and clang in silent space, purple twinged puddles in the middle of the rocky road going south, to nowhere. find the deus ex mocking every thought and word, soursop in a patch where lamplight shows the truth. mascara cara oranges shrivel and make faces at me from the decaying dirt. the ground floor staggers heavy, leafy greens high above shade lofty dreams. do they fall? is it the season, or does it even exist at all?
there’s something about peggy lipton tea—that ubiquitous chai vending its way around the continental divide, poorly rated p.g. tips beloved but outfit generic for the common. steam rises from cast iron fists clenched like baby. lifeless unformed fetal fingertips in webbed murky pools of phlegmatic amniotic sacs crooning in clashes of cacophonous cacao and ultraviolet waves. cough disturbs, umbilicus shifts. try triaminic for a minute. grasp tonics and tinctures to calm the runaway child slipping out with the heat and the nosebleeds. i am a social animal, it wants to say with its fishy, fleshy lips. but no one listens to the baby on the ocean floor. it isn’t pegged for what it is. but what is it?