Randy old men
watch fresh young flesh toasting
on towels at Lake Worth Beach.
They remember when their songs
rose like the waves lapping
at frosted pink toenails, at perfectly
oiled legs rising to meet at the crotch
of barely there, wannabe bathing suits.
Old women wait for them now,
women with breasts swinging like metronomes,
bodies stretch-scarred by merciless years.
They forget old women dream, too,
miss lustful glances, flesh pressed
against theirs, moonlit nights when kisses
still held the demons at bay.
Sunday Means Forty-Second Street
Kneeling in the Forty-Second street alley,
cord tight above elbow bend,
vein swollen and ready,
Mother, on his arm,
watches, patiently waits.
Sundays it’s always the Square,
flashing sign drawing his eyes
briefly towards heaven.
She always told him to go.
Hard to remember her clearly now.
Life eats his childhood daily,
fogging memories of a figure in blue,
scent of gardenias in damp air,
heels clattering over hardwood floor.
She would like it that he comes here.
Everybody needs remembrance
of a mother’s cool hand.
Until Darkness Takes Us
Over the smoggy horizon, Atlas quits,
hands in his walking papers.
His shoulders throb from shoring up
too many sidewalks, highways,
cloned houses and condos,
pressing the guts from earth’s belly.
His ears ring from the screams
of newborns in foodless deserts
and cheap housing developments;
from the sighs of the homeless
camped over heat vents or
laid out on park benches;
from the wails of penned cattle
and hormone plump chicken
who no longer know what it’s like
to run free.
Bewildered, we sink through the cracks
in this abandoned balloon.
Our hearts thrum distress signals
into the blackness. We send out search parties,
offer a hefty raise, still hold out hope
for one more Olympian reprieve
before the last spin is spun.