27 March 2011

Letters of Transit

lugubrious lady in her
chinchilla coat strides down
the avenue, her
past life neatly labeled,
tied into
tight little parcels
with the shiny-sheen of
embroidery thread twisting/untwisting
the ends fanned out
like her hair on the pillow
that August afternoon as
the sun crept across
the floor in solid gold bars
until there was
no more
and dark

then one ivory ankle
stepping into a taxi,
then another

and the bells rang out ever,
for ever

the pink cloud tree on Birch Street
due to burst again soon and she,
waiting with a wandering eye in
constancy, nonetheless, the
soles of her shoes
papered over, thick
with words, tripping over the
manhole cover (Bingham and

the cup of tea, overfull,
slopping into the saucer, the hieroglyphic
letters tied, safe,
slipped into a handbag as she
passes by a lantern-jawed Dick Tracy
chatting into his two-way wristwatch

his letters, the
book and volume
trembled from her hands to
keep company with the pocket comb
and the mirror

how d'you do?
how d'you do indeed?

good night, dear lady, good night,
good night, good night

the door is barred,
we'll venture forth
no more to speak
our words, thicksweet

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