Cream of Consciousness Soup, poem by Frances LeMoine

      cherry bombs, your approaching sneakers.
      High Mass, your retreating shoes.

      she jumped off the roof.
      twice.
      no bruise, no scratch
      the taste of dirt.

      early morning,
      her hand walked into a wall.
      priestly purple cast,
      six weeks.

      tunnels of love tundras of love
      love of tunnels and tundras
      she's in the right place,
      but doesn't know the time.

      tetanus shots six times a year
      forks, knives, sharpened spoons.

      The buzz
      the click
      of cnn-nbc-fox-cbs-cnn
      bodies abound,
      obvious mothers all look the same,
      little dead girls posed like Christ
      and evil,
      evil, they say, doesn't exist.

      And now,
      Who am I when I hold this plum?
      I am I, holding a plum,
      a plum not ready
      for teeth or tongue.

      I am I,
      who waits for fruit to bruise,
      to dent,
      not asking to be tasted,
      but to be anticipated
      like
      opening a gift.

      Sugar plums,
      black plums
      in September
      in New York
      from a creaking, dusty
      wooden stand,
      downtown.
      Downtown there were fruit stands.

      Or on 18th Avenue.
      In Brooklyn
      In September
      near the station
      where I picked up the N train.

      I've dyed my hair the color
      of plums.
      Great color.
      Never lasts.
      Just like September.

      Back to happier thoughts.
      Undeserved,
      when the television cackles.


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Jane Joritz-Nakagawa
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