A Public Sphere for Poetry, Politics, and Nature
At 7:30 am the sun’s already hot on my bare back.
East Carson’s nearly empty.
I want to say “my East Carson,” but I’ve learned not to claim
what’s not rightfully mine,
like the pond behind the college where I work,
home to one heron, ducks, snapping turtles.
Alycia came into work one day, waving her hands:
It bit me!
The girl at the bus stop in the evening dress and studded gold
sandals is lovely.
Whitman says: Happiness, not in another place but this place
not for another hour, but this hour.
Herons can kill snapping turtles,
shish kabob them with their beaks.
I could think of worse ways to go:
a burst bladder, lava lamp explosion,
choking on a hot dog.
Consider Susan Cabot, star of The Wasp Woman,
beaten to death by her 23-year-old dwarf son
with a weightlifting bar.
The photo in the article shows
her holding three cats,
one crawling on her shoulder.
The man who gave himself to me decently is dead
and he comes to me in dreams:
jump, he says.
Jump like the bball boys playing at sunset,
the sun redpink over their heads,
their skin made silk with sweat.
In my romantic mind, they move like they’re dancing.