Terracotta Big Lips
Pick up the turtle that's trying to cross
the highway, and turn it around. Nothing more we can do. Every time we
pass the body of a small dead animal on the road, I say in my heart-head
"sorry" to offer it some kind of comfort.
Oh yes I've seen him waving his hands
around. He's the very same one I think who told M her job was over, not
over but taken over by another. I wrote him a speech once, which he never
Lady Strolling with Umbrella
And strolling, as they say, is the
operative word. There she goes down the main street in the sun with the
rain falling everywhere but on her. Remembering old movies. Thinking of
fringes. Remembering how she'd admonished someone to go easy on the use
of the letters i-n-g.
Horribly sloppy job, the kind I've always
done sometimes. When he is nervous he makes too many jokes. "Have you
seen the happy faces in here on the wall?" he asks her. She says "oh no,"
and feels very anxious.
The Traveler Gone Astray
This is the saddest part. He was on his way
to a new straw life. "This is the day tomorrow" and "Tomorrow is
certainly the day" were still on his lips. He felt, indeed, like a loner
bright mallard. Rainwater collected on the brim of his hat until it could
hold no more, then fell into his lap with a splatter.
The cool sweetness of the blue bar of soap.
Aquamarine, really. And she was pleased with the crowd's reaction to her
solo, pleased although they didn't understand everything: how could they?
The clouds lifted slightly, an alabaster sky.
Landscape with Moon and Bird
This is the one everyone likes, for the
wrong reasons. The bird is not simply a bird, but two swans with six
cygnets who swim like a family of altars in front of our windows. Here it
is not here, not now, but all their doing.
Four Gentlemen in a Car
Well it was all easy enough for them. First
a fine dinner with perhaps oysters, no one having a problem with that end
of the food chain, and then a trip no possibly a dash around the park in
a rented white car. Toyota? No. Something snazzy like a Lincoln.
They Hold Council
They do and they scare me to death. And the
airplane fell down between the convent and the third grade school
classroom and the children prayed the rosary but the pilot was dead. Who
cared? Everyone. Little T found the pilot's burned tie.
Two Arabs Gesticulating
All they wanted was the certain kind of
zinnia that grows near the Sphinx. They were gravely misinterpreted. The
whole thing led to an enormous bloody war and all for a flower.
Arab with Rose
Rose was her name but her mother made her
change it at birth.
Musicians in the Desert
In the holy afternoon we discussed not
liking the flute, not just in Beethoven, but in anything. The viola, the
violin, and especially the cello or violoncello or viola-cellophane
another story. There in the moonlight, just as you suspected, the desert
breaks into its concerts of bloom. Cacti. Small owls. Shooting-star hoya.
Just as you suspected.
Two Camels with Packsaddles
Wouldn't they rather be free! Two camels
with backpaddles. Two camel backstrokes through breaking waves of sand.
Honor their fine thick toes, the wide caves of their eyes, their linen
lips, their ochre chalk smiles.
Diane Wald | Screen Three
Contents | Mudlark No.