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Poetry: Megan Aldrich

Pandora's Filthy Emerald

1. Vines intertwine over obscured dreams
like my hair, hanging in my eyes
moonlight transcends a dirty window
the dancing sun rises at my back
and I walk the lonely brown train track
following venus, shining over my town and
all that is tarnished in the sky
the tigers wait all around me
talking about their beautiful shiny teeth

2. I feel your arms wrap around me
like fig tree branches rotting in
the restless western sun
black and blue, just like my housefly life
tomorrow I'll be your loving wife
in my shimmering blue wedding dress
if I don't fade away tonight
drowning in your pool of dead hopes
I thought we were dying
you are my sweet skeleton

3. and I sell my soul to you
for a few anorexic dollars and
a chance at meeting god before I die
like southern preachers on their knees
I've always stalked you from the trees
I was a stillborn baby and i've been
denied, forgotten, lost in the strawberries
my stars lead me to a sad and wonderful future
tears of sapphire blueberry, so rare and sweet
I'll pick roses in your galaxy tomorrow



we, being the secrets of here and there—
we, as the monument to the heat of the
past, the far-forgotten and the sparkle
of flesh—something far within the "we"
of today sings to me from beneath the new grass—

you, being the mystical and infinite, the
love and the light, the dream floating
(lost) since the beginning of time—
you that understands the rhyme, feels the
pulse of the unattainable, somewhere far off i am
certain you still sing—

and i, being the question, the unfulfilled
detective of imagery, the brushing of shadow,
i am all silence battling humiliation, an extreme
longing for a balance--i am the grace of
the disgrace, the sense of the nonsense,
complete and incomplete until the end of time...



Landscape in dirty blue—
Vincent's beard of orange-green
   lighting up the drear of a
   battered cloudless sky.
Bus bench promising, "Sit Here Get LUCK"
  (Fat woman in black covering the Y,
   searching through her purse—
   for a Lotto ticket perhaps.)
I recline on unnaturally curved stone,
My kitten's mane of golden-red
   interrupting the emptiness of a
   tinted office window.
Parking meter punishing a woman
   who stopped for coffee as it
   ticked its last second.
Monochrome artificial palm trees
   slicing what's left of blue
   like a dirty paintbrush.
Flowers in fluorescent crimson
   clawing up a black screen
   just above the heavy rooftops—
We all have dreams like oil
paintings in dimlit rooms.



secondhand linger upon grisham
sip cellular triple gumdrop
entombed in someone's
pocket with the lozenges
whine to the hum
of powerline gregorians
the city stares relentless

whence comes the flower
wool suit smashing
pressed slacks such suppression
a capulet in maybelline
coughed into his handkerchief
signaling another sad washload
the city moans relentless

trashbag wraps it all
up, a poor man's heaven
taxi letdown and errant stitches
at oxygen critical he trips
and tripping, the alley
clouds over one peace
relentless screams the city



the television screen flickers a patterned glow
her body contorts upon the narrow seat
arms, legs, and torso flail to and fro
into the depth of sleep she tried to retreat
her mouth parts and closes
her hands rub her face
one foot nearly connects with some roses
television dialouge fills the empty space
she falls into restless fits
her hand tugging at her jeans
she dreams of where she sits
a one room palace of which she is queen
no prince come for her hand
only garbage collectors and cable men
find her stoop suitable to stand
the quiet there goes beyond zen
acrid smell of refuse from the street
comes into her mind even as she sleeps
each morning the new day to greet
with cockroaches across the floor do creep
giant bugs and mildew spots
three pieces of plastic patio furniture
brown stains coming via coffee pot
why she lives here she isn't even sure
clanking noises from the family downstairs
rattling children mean time to get up
at some point she fell asleep, it's only fair
seven o'clock time for coffee
a queen in a one room palace
awaken to ten year olds
no prince did she dream of by face
only jumbled midnite television retold


Copyright © 2002 Megan Aldrich.