Tuesday, April 06, 2010

The First Symptoms

No, I'm the monster, he says. Eyes
behind round tortoiseshell glasses

shift left, then up, redden. But
broccoli, she answers, I like broccoli

on my toast. Her purple lips
exactly match her fingernails.

He asks about their child,
part pony, part cat. The cop

looms over them, tall as a rosebush;
they try to ignore him. Her husband

loosens his tie, its bathing
beauties waving from the shore.

She pets the hem of her black silk
slip and tells it, I love you. The cop

clears his throat. She reapplies her
lipstick and her husband says,

I hit a swan on the way home.
It was crossing the Caulfield's pond.

Allergies? she asks. Everyone smokes
outside, he replies. Out in the parking

lot, next to the violet rosebushes.
The cop lights up and starts to cough.

The swan was my mother, he says
as the smoke enters the lace curtains

touching the window and drifts
into her hair. No, I'm the monster,

she says and kisses the cop's eyelids
as he flutters them obligingly.


Avo said...

I don't understand this poem as a whole... I'm not sure I am supposed to.
It feels like a David Lynch movie.

A string of conceptual and visual pearls that go from one to another, but instead of forming a necklace form something I can't see or quite clearly grasp, a mountain river perhaps?

Christine E. Hamm, Poet/Professor/Painter said...

Hi Alesa,

Thanks for your comments -- this is very like a David Lynch movie; I didn't realize that until you mentioned it.

Avo said...

Hello Christine. My pleasure... Not sure if commenting again "is done", but the witty (or at least wittier) conclusion to my first comment occurred to me as I read your response.
[...]form something I can't see or quite clearly grasp, a mountain river or a stream of thought perhaps?
Oh well, I'm pretty sure I wasn't going to get this year's trophy for spontaneous wit.
Looking forward to your next post.