The butter’s melting on the cornbread
At the end of the clock where I see you
Flashing the mad bling-bling like it was that
Mexican soap opera I was supposed to be in
But never showed up to with the homeless
French astrologer in her see-through numbness
& voice like ghetto taxes in Chicago.
Somewhere, the Duke is always playing as
Trap doors kick against the heliotrope air
That connects all the rolling Corinthian suns.
From the muscle cars along the surf I only hear
The echoes of deathbed blues & transparent Calibans
In gospel shoes made of the geranium chambers
Of my own untelevised execution.
I know you’re not a mannequin because I saw you
Putting away your name tag with those soft pillow lips
& nothing to wear & dreams to remember.
You send me away, but whenever I find you
In the arms of another, I tell myself,
“Wouldn’t it be wonderful if the worst
You could do was make someone feel good.”
11 June 2001
Spoken word version from Emergency Juke Joint.
Copyright © 2000 by Jim Cohn.
Text from Quien Sabe Mountain (Museum of American Poetics Publications).
Copyright © 2004 by Jim Cohn.