16 November 2010


dancing on the tightrope as the
Palm Springs doctor looks on, taking
notes on a lined yellow tablet

rings of gold, sliced pineapple, shine
wetly at the sun, occluded by
thick syrup, held in a blue bowl, sweet,

tones clipped as the bristles of a new broom, the
secretary pencilling in the next appointment
and the next, the next, the next,
starlight mints twinkling away in the cut-
glass next to a prim cloisonne
peacock, green, blue, green, green again,
splayed out to hold paperclips

nearly matching the brooch perched on the
sweater of the tightrope dancer (see
her bleeding through all that
pepto-bismol pink) pricked pale

beyond the blue door wind
whips leaves into a frenzied
circle, transitory autumnal crown,
brittle, so, it cannot last, is
sodden down by pelting rain, half ice,
half water, as if made to order,
cracked in a striped towel, shaken liberally, hurriedly,
chapping the face into a frozen mask,
herringbone heavy upon her shoulders

his notes not done, they go on forever
in their famous, spidery script, from
Harvard yard, to leafy Connecticut, and
back to New York again, the car
serviced, the oil and tires checked,
ready for that last and greatest journey,
to his dear, his lost one

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