Monday, January 14, 2013


Tamara Bunke, ambushed before Ernesto Guevara in Bolivia . . .
When the heiress Patty Hearst called herself Tania on videotape
armed with an assault rifle trained on customers during a bank robbery,
having succumbed to the Stockholm Syndrome,
kept in a dark closet until taking up with the SLA’s Willie Wolfe,
her gentlest lover, she later declared before trial,
this may have led North America to believe Tania and Che were lovers.
Cinque took Patty from the closet and raped her, though only
because he was the Symbionese Liberation Army headman,
an escapee from Soledad where George Jackson was murdered
in the prison yard wearing a gun his lawyer smuggled into his Afro,
but no gun was found. . . . I was living, if you can call it that, in San Diego.

Back in San Rafael, driving by its abandoned courthouse or to Marin Center,
I stopped at Cathleen’s house in the countryside
and later at the trailer court where she moved after leaving her husband,
twelve years following one January Seattle night we first came together.

In Amherst, Cathleen drove off and I flew to Spokane to drive her back
via San Francisco. One winter later, she moved to where she taught
Russian culture and literature in a Springfield Catholic school.
A nun got drunk one night and told her about her lesbian experience
and when she sobered up worked successfully to get Cathleen fired.
I lived alone, though part-time with Tricia. I don’t know why I identified
Tricia with Tania, but I did, I wanted her to stay with me . . . didn’t I?
If so, why then did I walk away with Cathleen from the swans’ pond?

I wrote a poem called Tea Party set in Boston. In Bemidji we saw Amistad,
a movie. Cinque freed the slave ship in 1839, not the same Cinque mind you
but the eponymous one now, defended in court by John Quincy Adams.
In my poem I was a renegade freeing the heiress Tricia, whom I learned to love.

I stop believing I will become a poet if I keep trying day after day.
I stop going to the movies. Cathleen and I live our lives out near the Yukon.

(14 January 2013)

copyright 2013 by Floyce Alexander

No comments:

Post a Comment