Tuesday, June 24, 2014


And what of those who populate the barren places no one else will,
where wind carries dust and flings both fistfuls in their faces . . .
Houses constructed of old clothes quickly ripped by the weather
once they are named ceiling, and sticks stand as close as sticks
can be, though wind invariably precedes or follows the full clouds
and what were once walls leave sand no longer serving as floor:

Yes, what of the poor, born to huddle in storms centuries
remember, women selling their precious bodies in streets.
How are we men when we deny shelter and love to women?
I do not care, I will sing their praises, and if we desire, make love
None of us were meant to live according to what other males say.
Off your knees, be naked with her, never fail to speak the truth.

I have shouldered hundred pound sacks equal to his.
After hours we heaved them into empty railroad cars
until their spaces were filled: the least of our labors.
We worked night and day, rotating shifts, as my village
disappeared. In the city I crossed mountains to find,
days were for excavating bony souls, nights learning their names.
(23-24 June, 7 -14 July 2014)

copyright 2014 by Floyce Alexander

Thursday, June 19, 2014

For Workers in the Sunup-to-Sundown Fields

                    in memory of the poet John Clare


Outlying provinces like distant cities spill over with fast talkers and trimmers.
There is so little time to get said what there is to say.
The bastards go back to sitting in easy chairs dallying with dogs, 
not cats, who are too bright not to know con  men
want to make each of them a mark and do them in.
I am done with the provinces, as I have been all my life an exile from cities.

Because I must dwell in the provinces venturing into a city to end each decade
with more teeth extracted, plates molded and wires to hook to those left,
should the last two go time will have arrived for the lower jaw to be filled,
and with its birthright of overbite the mouth will try to expel the foreign agent.
Even so, my underslung mandible will skulk through shadows cast by lights
on empty streets under no moon, manned by men who are said to be my kin.


Who would remember the dream no one knows how to read it is so absent?
Why wish for the air to be disturbed when fire might soothe you
if water were not involved . . . yet they are as always . . .
Who among us has not prepared for the vision of the pale seers
with doors that must be unlocked to enter, then locked until arrival.
Who does not know why this nightmare looms or for whom it is intended?

Animals snarl and limp off to care for their own. Humanity continues to dwell
out of sight, out of earshot, out of mind,
so do not dither with thought but be quick
when the pace accelerates, try to keep up
(some do but too few). Outside our zone of breath and smell the hallowed
ponder who may be chosen as worthy of being seen or heard, much less read.

(19-23 June 2014)

copyright 2014 by Floyce Alexander

Thursday, June 5, 2014

The character of mobility

is devoted to balance, attentive
to lurch and sway of bodies' secondhand.
Who has not been defeated in the nights
of slow-motion falls, the thuds on green rugs
never soft like being knocked asunder
on grass, the field turned into sod by cleats
of impresarios, the grid's masters . . .

(3-6, 18 June 2014)

copyright 2014 by Floyce Alexander

Immaculate Concepcion

This girl comes down the block they are climbing,
hunting for somewhere to stop and kill time
before tonight's first set. His clarinet
Bobby cradles in its case as he greets
the girl, who smiles. He stops, turns. She keeps on,
he walks beside her, descending with her 
where he wants to take her back to, with him.
He knows she will go where she wants to go.
She guesses he wants inside her panties.

Time passes they spend in a coffee shop
with a bar hidden under the counter.
Concepcion is her padre's surname,
and her mother named her Immaculate.
She's from the Mexico that disappears
into Guatemala. She left her child
with her latest lover, not the father.
She likes Seattle in the rain. She buys
a round. Not coffee, pulque with no worm.

Between Oaxaca and Guatemala
City, Bobby knows, may be where God lives.
He wonders aloud if she sees angels.
She laughs: Didn't you know I'm an angel?
He asks, Do angels make babies?
then adds: I thought only God could do that.
He's my brother, Concepcion declares,
He makes me Immaculate.
Incest? Bobby thinks, then asks.

You don't know, hombre, I have bones of steel
and I have no need to fuck my father!
She would like to ask Bobby when he's hard
in bed, does he come quickly, go flaccid?
She knows he would be what she'd have him be.
He's no more a man than all the others.
She says she has to go now. Bobby coos:
Imma, come up the hill and hear us play,
afterward we'll go upstairs, to my church.

(15 May-6 June 2014: II)

copyright 2014 by Floyce Alexander


Next door to the cardiac patients,
Bobby throws his weight around
without falling. At least that's what
floycealexander says in Bobby's behalf.

Noon gets them nowhere,
Bobby included.
Bobby wants to find a store and beer to go.
Clark knows a place near Hotel Congress.

But Bobby goes down the street, not up.
Three hookers to every block,
one on each end and one in the middle,
Bobby shines them on,

he's that well known. So he says.
floycealexander thinks: Bobby knows
the day as well as the night,
La Iglesia de La Puta knows only the night.

(15 May-6 June 2014)

copyright 2014 by Floyce Alexander

From Seattle to Appalachia, and Her Letter Back

Rosemary, having returned to her Blue Ridge roots,
writes, "Dear Bobby: I cannot help but tell you
my heart broke leaving Seattle,
sorrowful, abandoning La Iglesia de La Puta,
knowing full well I too was puta,
but not your Henrietta Murphy
in your story of her youth in Mexico City.
Over where I sold my body, I could hear hoot owls hoot.

"I think my cunt is growing its hymen back.
I want you to tell me how to get out of hell
now that my swollen tits are dripping milk.
I am alone in the cabin my daddy bequeathed to me.
You first saw me naked in La Iglesia
where you entered my body
to make a baby in Seattle.
Loving in La Puta, we made our luck.

"I only want to love you where you are,
but better that you come to live with me.
I have suffered nothing that you have been through
and out the other side. Here I am poor
like my folks, like I was in your city,
where the night gave us paradise. What did I need?
the shrieks of the panther deep in these woods,
the sun filtering through trees among trees."

1 June-18 July  2014

copyright 2014 by Floyce Alexander