Wednesday, August 20, 2014


Buena is off to the right
or to the left . . .
the direction the car
is traveling the back road
to or from the dam
the salmon run, hurdling
the falls to reach the calm
spawning waters
if first the Yakama don't spear
them climbing the ladder.

Buena is where
the Guzmans live.
Frank talks while I take
an hour to eat my lunch
on the grass
outside Employment Security
in Toppenish. Frank's wife
Geri takes classes
with Cathleen in Yakima,
at The Beauty School.

Frank knows I live here
alone, where Cathleen was
better-looking than the others.
You need a wife, she said,
I've got a wild hair up my cunt
I need to tame.
Frank asks what I do for pussy.
You mean, Where does my
Little Man go? (Cock is his word.
Polite brothels are my style.)

Frank launches into
his long dream
to be Geri's pimp.
That's a wet dream,
I laugh. Sure, he says,
but she's real, she's not a dream.
And I: Does she know
what you say about her
behind her back?
Frank: Sure, she loves me.

He wants to buy me a beer.
No, this's my only job.
Breathing booze gets you fired
if you push your luck.
Frank pulls up green grass.
All his life he's wanted to pimp.
Geri's a good girl, he says,
she'll do anything I want,
and adds: You'd get off too, 
her skin is alabaster white.

Naturally our conversation
shifts to Manson.
Guy filing his claim today
needed to talk about love
and death, Sharon Tate
and the lifestyle of the rich
confronting the poor pimp
with his bevy of girls
holing up at the Spahn Ranch
in Death Valley.

Guy said, Charlie's girls killed
for him, murder earned them
like an eagle-scout badge.
He's got his boys selling
dope on the streets of L.A.,
up and down the canyons.
And on all of San Francisco's
Roman hills, those St. Francis
named before he left town
to rid Ireland of its snakes.

That was St. Patrick, I said.
Guy: Oh . . . So how much
do I get a week? I think,
That's like  Frank
asking me what I thought
his wife was worth
on the meat market.
Me: She's your wife, Frank.
He replies, I want her to work
on her back for me
so I can keep control.

Better than eight to five,
he swears, doing hairdos,
painting nails. Hell,
floycealexander (he says
my name fast, like I ask),
she's a good piece,
she needs to sell it.
It's up to you and her, I say.
I go back to the claims window,
and here's this lady with tits . . .

(19-20 August 2014)

copyright 2014 by Floyce Alexander

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