Thursday, December 6, 2012

The Hell He Travels (4)


He has seen the seas enclosing three borders of the nation.
The slate gray Atlantic, the worn blue Pacific
with brown waves, and the Gulf of Mexico,
whose water is warm and without pity
for the dying. He knows death when he feels it approaching,
his only hope to make the resurrection, or so he thinks.
His ears are listening to their own tongue,
riding in a car east, through the desert;
then farther, to a country dwarfed by memory . . .
Only to return under a sky of lightning and thunder
ignited and reverbed where he expected harps, not guitars.
Back then to confront knives and brass knuckles, 
refusing a fight, walking away, cries of shame following.
And lives, returns the car, pays, retrieves his collateral,
checks in with George who proclaims him lucky to be alive.
Go home, Flowers. Read poetry to the doomed of Soledad.
Warden says his craw is full up with poets, he needs guards.
On home then. The fire at the court house smolders still, the Afro
allegedly concealing a gun unravels in the grave,
the Doors’ When the Music’s Over playing over and over.

(II: 6 December 2012)

copyright 2012 by Floyce Alexander

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