Sunday, March 30, 2014

Noir

Jesus on the dashboard
pistol under the seat

Lately, strange days
dogging me like parking tickets
daily tripping up

So I lit out
driving on Nine
mud in my veins
brights on the fritz
eye on the dividing line

the contents of Salma's bag beside me
burning holes in my calm

"Death is a star" the car radio whispers
sung before shitheads replaced fiction with fact

Snakes sidewind the roads
working on their midnight tans
and those bullets in my hip bag
an army of Henry's silver miracle makers

A 4 AM rendezvous at the reservation
nobody at my back
as I walk on gilded splinters
thread shoestrings through black sand

"Follow my lead" she's said, Salma
before her concrete bath
in a construction site north of town

Together, we'd seen that murder can be gentle
we'd witnessed the etiquette of violence
they'd placed a velvet noose in her slender hands
"Concerto para un tiroteo"

That dirty handshake. That dirty, dirty handshake.

Henry would bow his bass. A low keening, tremoloing above the wind at night.
Salma said it helped her sleep.
Henry owned a fine selection of hats and colored birds.
Henry drew maps on dish cloth.
Approach from the east. Lights off, stay low. Shoes off, treading over glass.

I see them. Two men near the eastern entrance.
The closer of the two, eating beans with his hands. Moonlight glinting off the Uzi at his feet.
Static hissing from the handheld radio beside him.
Small mercy that. A carpet for my creeping.
Crouching, I peel off slowly to the side. 

Staying low, stepping outside out of moonlight
into blankets of shadow

Another's snores audible on the other side of the fence
Their certainty my shroud

If I do this right
there'll be no need to wash crimson from the blade of my gravity knife tonight
or call on Henry's silver angels

July.
Salma sailing through the air, tethered to silk
Wingwalking at dawn
I swat the image away like so much perfumed dust

Eenie meenie, gentilhombres.














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