Tuesday, September 12, 2006

"Groovy Mortimer Y Su Lepista Nuda"

"Groovy Mortimer y Su Lepista Nuda"

It was a black beans summer night,
the squash was kid long in the grass
and you could smell the tamale pie in the avenues
coming from the curtained backs of the bodegas.

Lucky Cienfuegos was on the ancient phonograph,
black nylon no longer slick, the tar-voiced maestro
still snappin' his hat on the wrist, stiff kinky
creases in the cuff, double turned and out

of fashion. But in his prime, never: cha cha ritmos
of rhymes between the bolero eyes, Caye Coco
all the way to the heavenway of poetry, Mayan
waves chucking bonito in the aqua

spray. In a heyday of rites and rituals,
this shred left on the trunk of cultura like
candlesnuff clumps on a stump, the indigenous
xlaria hypoxylon, common and otherworldly

as a woman named Kosumi, Miwok for
She Who Fishes For Salmon With A Spear
who goes into the forest padlocked in pine and
searches the Aspen floor for the populus tremula,

the aspen flower for fears -- to stop the fear
and trembling of an age. This black bean soup.
This herbal blossom. "How to Speak,
And How to Listen."
The blue foot, pink cap

lepista nuda sunning herself among the needle
beds -- purple fleshed in the vulva, a hundred
fires in the stem. And somewhere sweet Seymour
turns in his dream of beaches and pies, spies

the black pitcher of night dawning into sap,
the well-fed soul stalling on the stove,
a single salmon stunned in the wake and
scooped up by hand en un camino antiguo,

un camino real. And Mortimer grooves,
his lucky capitalist nickel heaving up
the tunes on a lonely juke box on a flaxen
fleshy night; the groovy night, a wood blewit

blue cap erect, edible and delicious.

Lorna Dee Cervantes

1 comment:

Pris said...

I like this, Lorna.