Thursday, December 8, 2011


Don't I Know You?

If you resided in my memory at all you must
have been squatting in one of the abandoned
store fronts on the two lane running straight as
a nail past the defunct rail yard parceled into
lots never sold, survey flags paeons to dreams of
manufactured housing. I apologize for relegating
you to the outskirts of town, but property here is
dear, boundaries fixed, all the prime locations gone
to family and friends and enemies and Lacy Webb
from fourth grade and Jerry from my first job who
sprinkled pot into the wedding food we
made. That, and I've begun to notice whole
neighborhoods razed, scraped clean, returned
to meadow, only birdsong and shallow cellar craters
to the horizon. You sprang fully formed, swiveled
on your bar stool, sly trick of synaptic algorithms,
like the misfired launch of an ancient Sputnik
transmitting a Good n' Plenty jingle into my
brain, taut and sweating with the effort of reading
E.O. Wilson. You entertained me with an impromptu
before and after, the former hazy, the latter frightening
with your hunched back, eyes like odd and even dice and
your mouth slowly kneading words into doughy vowels.
Your town is populated by ghosts. We shook hands,
said goodbye and you returned to your haunted stool.

December 8, 2011

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