Thursday, May 18, 2006

Through a Looking Glass

Janet says: I got the idea of the stylized hair for My Sister's Green Hair from Cheryl's long wild hair. Cheryl says:it is not and never has been green.


At a gas station a few miles out of town,
a cur laps up the rainbow in a puddle. The girl
lays down some rules: the men I date know
I date other men. They don’t hafta like it.

At the bar, he’d watched her heave-ho hips.
Red-eyed truckers cranked on No-Doz
and diesel fumes barely blinked all night.
By last call, there was one man standing.

The girl squints at the bloodshot sun, puts on
dark glasses. Feet on the dash, she separates
each toe with cotton. When the man touches
the brakes, a swipe of red bloodies the balls.

They stop for coffee at the 7-11. She digs
in his pocket for the car keys, asks Can I drive?
They already know where. He’ll be her next exit,
nearest off –ramp, a neon sign she can’t wait to run.
(Tin Lustre Mobile)

Shoulder with Gargoyle

Ambiguous figures in Reaching Out were inspired by the lyrics to a Jimi Hendrix song. Our mother thinks the tall figure is a kangeroo; that can't be right, can it?

The Rules
Nature abhors a vacuum and proved it:
Black Forest horses could not pull
the gleaming sphere apart; not with
the emptiness still inside.

A girl hangs by long white gloves
from a subway strap. Green taffeta
billows about her like an ocean
reflecting bilious clouds

Driver of the dented head, watching:
lovelorn with intact peripheral vision.
Can he decipher the gestural marks
in her comings & goings?

Light is nano- structured toward slant.
What you see isn’t what you always get.
She steps from the fabric foliage-
a folded bud ready for forcing.

Everything digital screams 12:00.
Fresh from the chapel
the vacuum-packed couple
begins to spell Trouble


Dead End

In his absence, her thoughts
run to him, though she rises up
under another man. Her eyes
never leave the door that could
still open on her second chance.

She thinks of the faithful,
how they paced widows- walks
for a glimpse of their wanderers
hoisted over the horizon,
and of Penelope
weaving and unweaving
so that time might stand still.

When the new man leaves her
as good as alone, she switches off
the lamp. Hours tail each other
like bad drivers chuffing past
her window. High-beams
crisscross shadows animating the dark
and light climbs the wall, lingers
for a moment before it turns to go.


Speaking of walls, here's one where the body is becoming a wall as the woman kneels on the black surface. Her dislocated arm brings on the yellow. Colors shoot from behind the wall like a firing squad.


A man splits a coconut
over a stone. Sweet milk flows
from the hemispheres.

When the stone, unscathed,
leaves the man’s hand, it’s the air
that cracks during the long hurtle
toward the woman’s skull.

Her daughters wail behind her,
tongues trilling against the wind.

Pub news: Janet will have work from her book Flytrap in Cleveland State University's Poetry Center's 30th Anniversary Anthology. Here is Cut Off at the Knees from that collection:

And Cheryl has been chosen Discovery Poet for the next Botteghe Oscure!


michi said...

green hair! yay! :) cool stuff, ladies


Cheryl said...

Hi, Michi! Pretty un-mowed looking, isn't it? Glad you had a peek...

C & J

michi said...

might go well with a flowery hat! ;)