Deeply concerned about water, starlight,
the home where we should have been
all along, but were not; waiting for fountain soda
to fill our manly full-liter mornings, manifestoes
minnowing forward, every America
making its mark; the last thing on our minds
was the memory of bonnets, thought bubbles floating
past unsold meats. Bright and vital, bright and vicious,
a California crime scene caught on film,
every penumbra was priced to move
according to its predators. Planets traced the patterned lot
and we reread the signs. That space-heated season
we knew would not return despite our chivalries,
the inclement hour our blankets burned
like comets before our eyes, we awoke to tissue paper,
petals of feeling. Our tired hands
unwrapped like gifts. What had been lost
beyond the sky, a galaxy of excess, a mountain climbed
that crumbled in the palms beyond the shore—
we wondered why the atmosphere adorned itself in data.
The streets like ticker-tape ribboned with reasons. The race
of our hearts as we fell fell again.
Out of line with logic, into fashioned
sprays of distant grief, ambrosial poise,
the pennies and the plumage that stole into the city
left our heads unmade with fear. We thought it was over
when the clowns showed up. Crowds without a crisis
raffled off a used prescription. A sound from the station
blue enough to refill the world anew.
“History is finishing,” we yawned
by the glowing snack table. A close call, a lucky night,
a lovely mackintosh slick with dirt; music
from the lobby, unbelievable bread and ballroom fire.
We dipped into bowls of beige and then returned our hands
to our faces. Recreation, plenitude, irresistible
reasons to spill. Irresistible reasons to pull together
what was missing. With the rhythmic grass
of hula girls, we shimmied down the runway.
Deeply concerned, we launched into space
our fat, loud, carnivorous vowels.