August 12, 2007

“ is surprising how the morning air gives one ideas!”
--Scenes de la Boheme

Facing the blank of the wall,

turning toward the window, distracted
by a Puccini aria blasting from a Speedpack box
at the Car-O-Van blocking the sidewalk--
a neighbor is packing up a life, all the odd
whatnots, curious thingamabobs,
those whatchamacallits. No passerby veers
from the bellow of the taped tenor,
from the pell mell of the sidewalk--each stops,
has to stop, heads ticking back and forth.

Words drift this way and that

in from the fussy street, and I am distracted
as another curiosity piece enters the scene--
a sea blue‘52 custom Ford pickup
pulling up to the curb, a woman
in a cracked black leather jacket,
in low slung jeans and velvet high tops,
hair a slick of purple pomade, singing,
singing along in a froggy single-speaker rattle
to La Boheme.

Flightless bird beneath a storm-scratched sky,

I try to chip out my own sound
beneath this canvas of noisy spring flyway,
but I am distracted by Our Lady of Lourdes
churchbells chiming in almost midday
and something else I am getting up to do
that I forget in an instant, yet something
curiously more important now
than facing the blank of the wall--

where corners web with dust.

—Andrena Zawinski
appeared in Vermillion Literary Project Magazine

Posted by dwaber at August 12, 2007 11:02 AM