Sleeping in a cone of streetlight on a slab of concrete, in my shopping cart a puppy and a hubcap and an amber tail light, dreaming I’m some family’s pants, some party’s life, and I mistake a lampshade for a hat and dance around a chair and when the music stops at sunrise and I’m workbound on the freeway, banners on highrises tell me if I lived here I would now be home.
I put on an exoskeleton of bandages and glue and lash my fickle body to a splintered mast and in this plaster cast and with my elbows’ angles fast I have my laughing classmates sign and on the ice chest that contains my future heart is printed YOUR NAME HERE and on my sandwich sign, my bankrupt’s barrel, BUY ONE, GET ONE FREE and in my idle why and knee-jerk cause-I-said-so I am growing rows of ears with lobes and hands and feet with fingers and with toes.
In my bubble, on my floating half-shell, I shall conjure touch and love of rubber glove on rubber sleeve, anticipate the warm and damp reprieve, in my starvation mode, past passion, jaws wired shut, I’ll digest my own muscle tissue, drink and breathe and see as through a reed, a hollow bone, that I’m the source of light, the beauty queen embellishing the float composed of chicken wire and kleenex and, my candy thrown, my kisses blown, a clam, I’ll burrow back into the sand.
By the scattered feathers and the black-tape outline you will know me, by raised footprints of compacted snow, and one foot in my bathtub, one foot in my bed, a shoe in each of two canoes, electrified, vibrating, secret spent, I may repent, inhaling steam and chained to my machine through swing and graveyard shift. Positioned on a fence post while Delilah, laughing, drives away, I’ll stick my head and neck out, arms and legs and point of tail and I’ll be swimming in the air. Once loved and now of worth, I’ll pity those poor turtles still on earth.