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Up the Staircase Quarterly
La ventanai.La ventana by vespera
In my dream Grandpa My stands in the veranda
across from my apartment—as always, in the shade,
and his linen shirt shows no perspiration from the heat.
I believe we are in dry Madrid where I have not been
for years. He has been dead twice as long, yet here he is:
no death mask and his smile calm. Grandpa! I call.
From my window our eyes meet. Grandpa! It's me!
He remains smiling, but won't return my wave.
In the next dream Grandma Suzy comes to visit,
maneuvers herself through the door of my Piso.
Grandma, I say, hurry! Grandpa's here.
She gives a girlish laugh and comes to my window.
She is seventeen, as she was in Chicago, celebrating VJ
and sipping her first beer. She has no eyes for me.
Grandma, I whisper, why won't he say anything?
He's shy, she whispers back; he's so tall, isn't he?
THE DEPARTUREMomma, your daughter is dripping down the side of the world, dissipating slowly.THE DEPARTURE by vespera
I thought you should know.
At night I hear the police helicopter circling like a fat buzzard, contemplating if it
will kill- perhaps, not kill. It hums as it picks the city clean while I am a sieve,
howling hungry. I gape and gape and run right through the days, thinking: to kill
or not to kill. I thought you should know.
Tuesday rolled into Wednesday and I was caught somewhere between, slipping
through myself. I dreamt of orchards: tart citrus splitting my tongue and bees
working themselves through my hair. Grandpa was there, asking after Grandma,
his shirt, crisp from the iron, eclipsing the fruits. He was no more reachable than
the summers he spent under the verandah, his shirt, crisp from the iron, safe from
the sun. I was eight, treading water, and from the edges: bursting oleander. You
were coming to pick me up, Momma. When I dried off, my legs read: MEAN MEAN!
MEAN and I was balled
Glory Be! March 14th, 2014I smile as I unravel an e-cigarette from its plasticGlory Be! March 14th, 2014 by vespera
and cardboard. You've bought it for me
As if you could dam my mania, my titanic
movements, inside 4 inches of vapor.
Naïve lover mine; naïve lover, who knows me
so well, I love your love that believes
There's a tame me, more than a wildebeest
or the Jenga game played too long,
Ready to fall, you wonder if you'll be it:
that last gap
to topple all.