They found a pearl that weighs 34 kilos.
The world’s largest biggest.
It weighs as much as an
Olympic gymnast or a
Wheel of parmesan cheese.
More than the cursed pearl
Kino cast into the sea.
It has the beauty of neither,
This mammoth, misshapen thing,
Nor the iridescent skin of
A perfect white marble
On a string of perfect white marbles
Threaded by a strand of silver
That draws your eye to the
Alabaster nape of a lover’s neck.
Where she lifts strands of her silken hair
For you to close the clasp.
This morning I awoke speaking Australian
To a group of high school kids who
Loved my books and the TV series
Based on them. They wanted to know
How I allowed this certain actress
To play the ballerina assassin. So
I asked, what actress?
What TV show?
What rights got sold?
Why am I speaking Australian?
So I called my agent up and
Her office was closed and
It would cost $20 for her
To call from vacation.
So I called the film agent
Who was on vacation
In the background
The high school kids
Chanted my name, “Rob Thomas! Rob Thomas! Rob Thomas!” and
I realized things had gone horribly wrong
In this dream I was dreaming in Australian
And learning that I
Was a Veronica Mars knock off.
At least I was still dressed
And wearing good boots.
But even if you’re dreamland naked,
You can wade through a lot
Of anxiety if
You’re wearing a pair
Of good boots.
If I had eyes of Janus —
God of beginnings and endings,
Gates and doorways,
Locks and keys,
Whose two faces looked Continue reading
Sparks and clouds like stardust,
Her soft kisses lit my mind,
Filled it with fire and darkness
That set my lips ablaze.
But the taste of her was fleeting
Like a whisper on the wind
For among the stars she dwells now
And not in the earth I know.
I’m left drowning in the river,
Straining to taste my star once more.
My appetite left unsated,
Throat as parched as dust.
The boy played in the dirt yard. His mottled back was bare as the wind blasted fields around the house. He sifted the loose dirt like flour through his fingers until it drifted and faded into the breeze. He chewed his thumbnail, ground tiny rocks between his teeth, and spat out the remains, skin and rock together.
The boy’s mother rocked the porch swing to passively fan herself. Lines creviced her face, eroded by a flaccid life, a seeped-out balloon. Her hair tied back by a faded blue ribbon, she watched her boy as he rolled the dirt between his fingers, crushed it in his palms.
“Ashes to ashes, dust to dust,” he said then laughed as if he wanted to cry.
“Your Daddy says he’ll get a job.”
The boy wrote his name in the dirt. “Doing what?”
“Down to the chicken house.”
“That’s work for trash.”
“It’s getting to the point where we is trash.” Continue reading