I donít know
if the word fortnight
ever had anything to do
with forts or holing up
or the walls climbed
in controlled solitary
strapped to the metal table
as the revulsive body
rejects the soul,
spits it out with the laundry
in the long hours
before the pale dawn
considers opening its eyes.
Nor does it matter,
I suppose, how the scars
no one sees, might as well
originate from the claws
of a grizzly bearówhich,
really, is a code word
for the panic that eats
the body for breakfast
and spits out the gristle.
Itís not like this aluminum bed
remains clean of night dirt
or the spasmed bladder
or the numerous nightmares
that sweat through
all the white canvas layers
It must have had a beginning,
but I doubt there is an ending,
even miles from the white bricks,
the second floor double security doors,
the companionable screams
from similar rooms work their way
through the cracks of forgetfulness.
For a Change
For a change all the indigent people
are spotless, shiny clean, squeaky clean,
dressed in designer labels, but they still
have no where to go.
Turns out panhandling fails more often than not
when wearing Armani. And tired acquires
a new dimension when the sidewalk
refuses to be a bed.
A toll booth springs up at the door to the mission church:
The white lace currency of the Victorian Age adopts
a stand of bronze bells, a carillon, a solitary
Salvation Army Santa in need of the kiss
of a flask buried in his hip pocket.
Some old hymn plays itself on pedal pushers,
spiting the highway department, the interstate
commerce act, the toxifying effect of a deep breath
where the air is brown.
For a change the
relocate to mountainous national parks,
while the columbine retire, in comfort,
to the south of