Wednesday, February 2, 2011

wistful in the burbs

we kids spend a lot of time
staring out windows:

doodling wobbly faces in our notebooks as we eye
the clock, the clouds, the jock toy figures bright on the field,
the seagulls hovering over their fast food carnage,
the clock, the potheads under the bleachers fogged
in their defiant cloud, the teacher's crotch, the clock --
anything but the hieroglyphs on the chalkboard;

hearing the rare honk or drunken shout rupture the hushed night
on our safe, lamp-lit streets,
sitting up in bed alert, cat-like and eager almost,
scurrying to the window and seeing nothing,
dipping slowly back into bed, furtive, disappointed,
yanking the sheets back up to our chins
while waiting taut-jawed for sleep;

feeling nauseous or cranky or bored in our parents' cars
that pilgrimage to the strip malls
with their parking lots like concrete moats,
watching the billboards roll by
with their promises of bigger screens,
faster networking, tropical getaways, cottage chairs,
elements of rustic and metropolitan life
that aren't ours:

we watch these artificial landscapes roll by
dreaming of greener, grittier life.


whatever magic is,
it's measurable.

it's in the metronomic dance of cogs
in your watch,
in the gallop of your hands
on keys.

it's in batter's
metamorphosis into cake,

in the zygote's slow unfurl
toward corpsehood.

it's in the understanding that flowers
in the two cerebellums
of the two people who speak
and see it potted and vased
on the sills in each other's eyes.