In Therapy

While difficult, it’s necessary:
Please forget whatever you’ve learned.
Simply cast off far as your reach allows
Catch right out of your murky memory
Blue fins, red snappers, orange roughy.
Back farther still to the new golden oven
Our kitchen clock never learned the truth.
A fast 2/4 beat jazzy dancing
Upbeat, and a seductively winking
Sexy new VCR 12:00, 12:00, 12:00.
Technology became everyone’s
Personal red light districts.

Edison’s electricity fails
Exceptionally bright children.
Kicking the ground, head down,
Out until dinner’s ready or
We cross our fingers, she yells,
“I don’t feel like cooking, ya know?
You mind if we head to Figaro’s
For a coupleaslices and movies?”
Old, black and white anachronisms:
Laurel, Popeye, Lucy. Finally, the promised
Pizzas arrive dripping grease and saying cheese.
One pie done. “Mom” all turn at once
Six egret blonde necks crane
Towards sound as birds do
Before they fly off, too.
Cackling in the corner booth
Smacking on Juicy Fruit, Fruit Stripe,
Jaw jacking, laughing until they cry.
We taste their lemony demands,
Denied their own slices of pie.
Our fathers’ sweets from up north
Mountainous cheesecakes,
Spongy black and white cookies.
Dads come from the stripped albums
Reappear from their half of the picture,
As if a building in an earthquake split
In two as the house shook like a jell-o mold.
Waves of sound pulsing
The walls and the doors
Slam shut and bang
Time until another
Station plays a top ten chart hit argument.

Her next Marlboro hangs like
A twig from a crow’s feet.
Who has a light?

Florida, State Your Name

You carry our secrets whispered into cardboard boxes tied tight with candycane twine
(That kind you find in old-time kosher bakeries.)
Tall cakes topped with buttercream flowers in new-fatigue green and suburban-Mustang blue whose
Stemless petals rise above yellow spongey layers with strawberries.
Pure as curbside snow. Pure as little girls with pinch pink cheeks.
Too early for my birthday the trail of a mistake runs upstairs from cheap paper doilies.
Pin striped suit coat and sea glass blue shirttails waving gooodbye, or hello,
(I never knew the difference.)
My hair twisted into a gilded fist as you push my resistance down,
Down into the drowned warped boards.
Raising my right hand, I swear you found a pushover:
A raggedy doll tape and bubble gum, of bare burlap, plaid, and buttons, of red yarn
Covering my torn skin where I stitch myself up and over
(And over to hold myself in again.)
A stray calico cat sits in the window right above your shoulder, startled by your loud heart.
I can still hear you slapping your thigh and then,
Distant laughter cries at your day-old jokes jokes and overtold stories.
Your hysterical, foul, scorn defers a look at me.
I hated you for that minute, then carrying on again I forget you already told me.

My face looks tired, uncooked, undone.
While white hot light sheds the palmetto scrub
Covering the non-natives invading our country- bright boisterously green parrots.
Which fly in on an uncommon flight schedule,
Catching a torrent of wind the turkey vultures wind into a tornado
Turning up higher and faster into the late afternoon rain.
Here, every shower comes in on time right at four.
Bursting open ladies with umbrellas, with daisy dresses, tulip capris, white rose tanks,
Waltzing by the front porch screen doors squeaking,
Slippery dimpled thighs sing together,
All sweet, easy, glide by leaving their perfume behind.
Then zipped into black patent leather hand bags powders, compacts,
Glossy rippled heat waves us in on a 45 degree right angle sun ray.
Show up the hidden mildewed sinews of ductwork,
And the hum of air conditioners masking our words.
Slowly dripping outside busy windows pelted by huge mosquitoes,
Or rain?
(Probably rain cries outside)
Only two minutes, like soft boiled eggs on timers,
Now done cooking. Her eyelashes, false
Newly bred widows sit with spidery eyes,
Single fingers silently making reservations for you.
They reapply the glue, so unkind, that damned humidity.