Saturday, June 06, 2009

Mango Sky

Walking back from the blood bank,
it's a fine and rapturous day.
I've just given my donation
to the common good,
and the brotherhood of all,
and I've got
nothing to say.
But the sun is kicking the wind up,
speaking in licks of waves
on a gin-clear lake while I've still got
nothing to say.
With the sun and the lake
singing their invisible duet
my only regret is
having eaten that fajita before I found
this bodega with its mound of
mangos ripe
as a tropical sunset's threatening
watermelon sky. Feel like I

fell off a cliff, drifting off
El Capitan, a mammoth fluted
riff of granite, fell off
El Capitan like Yosemite Sam
on a hang-glider, and I'm riding the thermals
of that duet like a top forty hit. Got more
airplay than I'm equipped for,
more airplay than my
flight training prepared me for.
Got all my true possessions gripped tighter
than my fannypack: gut-sense enough
to stay the hay out
of the coal mine.
No caged canary in bituminous darkness,
no graduated dipstick
in swampgas isolation,
I have just left the blood bank,
and my heart is coursing through
the veins and arteries of my
fellow man, my
fellow woman, I am in
red commerce with the world,
like a hang-glider in the mango sky
carrying all the life insurance there is.

Somewhere over the eye-rope,
the tongue-wire, over the glass-fire
fiber optic, there is a chain-gang
getting rich. There is a chain-smoking,
chain-store, chain-gang
getting rich,
trading stocks on insider tips,
leveraged buyouts, like bodybuilders
in a graveyard. Somewhere beyond my
El Capitan airplay there are fiberoptic bodybuilders
getting rich in a graveyard,
and I don't know which one of us is right,
me, in the spiraling sky blue in green leaf duet ride,
or them buried in their wealthy bituminous fossilized
night. Can't decide which one of us is
waiting on a mail-order miracle,
waiting on love like some
mail-order, freeze-dried miracle
you just add water to.

Like the perfect blow-up doll.

And as you ask what is the point,
the chiselpoint of my gin-clear
Beaujolais duet, I say,
I say, I say, I am not
the bouquet. Not even
the sommelier.
I am just walking downtown today
on my way back from the blood bank
of daylight savings and loan,
where my only true donation flows
through the circulation of men and women
I will never know.

Could a metaphor explain
that I am the flake-feathers of snowbirds?
Not the spun metal fiber of lamé burial clothes.
That when the escape-wheel of fate's timepiece gets
permanently stuck,
you won't find me on a
golden chain gang,
you won't find me revenging myself
on no brain-eating flies,
you won't find me in the world's
biggest shopping mall,
frantically scanning my GPS device
for some kind of way out.
But, like a kinetic sculpture,
you might find me hangin around
a museum: cresting the champagne powder
of a Bitterroot ridge. Goo-goo eyed for some au naturel
water nymph swimming the swells off the cliffs of Negril,
or thrilling in the crepuscular image-arpeggios of poetry,
jazz improvisations for my home,
working my idea jujitsu against the Mafia patent
on dreams. Working
25/8 to vaccinate children
against bureaucrats,
and Eurocrats, and their
android progress. Spray painting
fluorescent tie-dye on their blinders,
a reminder, a reminder, a reminder that
blood bank is redundant,
without heart.
Without art.
Without flight coursing through the
sky-blue veins, and sunset arteries of our sisters and brothers
we would be nothing
but chain-store body builders
in an autumn graveyard.

1 comment:

dan smith said...

Dear Terry:

I love this poem! I think it is one of your best among a host of very fine ones.

I love the mood of it and the way the themes weave in & out of the startling images and the way the poem makes me feel like I too can
fly in some mango sky.

Best regards,
dan smith