Saturday, July 12, 2014

What, This City Park?

Potpourri printed this one.

Here is God’s plenty
--Dryden

I watch the garden mythologically,
predator swans beneath the victim trees
whose limbs still twist, the Zoo a generation
of sweat transforming semen. It may be
the tail of the tapir holds statistical
significance, as flexible as a god.

Look at the fountain, all carved heads and mouths
smiling in blindness, O-O’d in stone terror,
or blank, as though anomie were their defense.
The flowers soil themselves with seed: they once
cried to be changed, and now they are, they are.
The coral snake remembers better days

when he swam double-breasted in a rain
of terror. There are peacocks in my path.
Two antelopes who can’t elope because
Jove pinned them in begetting to the sand
until they begged in heat for hooves, they made
story. A bullfinch twitters. From my first

fable up to the present, who has been
transformed by hormones, given plumes, and sent
to brood odd young in armor? Who’s been paid
for charm in stars? Who started school but came
back home a tale of fantasy in feet
some free verse mortal thought too cute to count?

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