October 12, 2011
Toward the shore waves roll and unroll,
sprung level, loosened from the cunning grip
of plastic curlers as if the laboring Chinese
who clipped those round, green, blue, and grey
contraptions cursed: paid to sail just this far, no further.
Contrary, flat as my hair, waves reject
rastafarian fashion this sun-glazed wading day.
Ancient, unkempt, sparse and loose,
lank they lie across a horizontal noon
oblivious to weaves and gels.
In China workers repeat their motions dry
miles from tidal pools. Their own hair hidden
under wraps will whiten later, not now,
not within their sadly repetitious time-ticks
not folded into glamour mags where they smile.
But are we not all alike, you ask?
Indeed. We all want flowing curls unless by some
grief of genes they manifest at birth.
At the age of sex, oh iron it flat. Which is to
say, contraptions shape desires of every sort,
and I proclaim the sea a dream contraption,
a sieve through which we squeezed
four-limbed and handy, to harvest credit cards, artful
wars, waving symbols upon the pock-marked moon.
Where could mermen dwell now?
Where have limber mermaids fled lugging
lank wet weeds, who before their crude diáspora
urged their smiling strong-armed mates
to propagate old myths and fairy tales
beneath the humping stallion waves?
to suffer decades for their dismal pensions:
engraved gold curlers, a bag of bitter salt.
2010 - 2019
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