Word Scout

                       -- For Arlene Ang


I see you in my mind's eye

sweeping Venetian backstreets

with your full-length purple coat,

too slender to be a gypsy,

a different fire in your eyes.

You walk lanes into existence

with random steps; behind you,

they promptly contemplate coiling up.

You don't strew breadcrumbs,

you never walk the same street twice.

In the corners of dusty piazzas,

words flock to you like pigeons

as you reach out to them, promising

a happy life in all the great places.

Sometimes in dreams

I watch you wringing their necks,

twisting them into every shape

your cruel muse demands.





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