Thursday, April 21, 2016

When Doves Fly

2:29 pm at my boy Barry's house in Brigantine, and I grab my black Eddie Bauer jacket I got at Harrahs Casino and dash out the door because the 501 to Atlantic City is due at 2:30 and I rush to corner, one hand deep in my right pocket for my change as the bus trembles up, then realize I only have $20 bills which yesterday the Treasury Dept. announced will carry a portrait of Harriet Tubman on with Andrew Jackson's now on the backside and the bus glides past and I curse our 7th President, only it's the kind of day that Bill Withers sang about and the next bus isn't due for an hour, so I stride and revise a poem in my head which I read last night at the World Above reading at Dante Hall, one of the best open readings I've been to since Its Your Mug shut down and I change the poem's title to "Portrait of the Artist as a Starfish in Coffee" because my cousin Derri Dias (who is a gorgeous actress in LA) posted a video on Facebook of Prince on Sesame Street performing that song which grows on you like the hair in your ears and I decide to change the last two lines from a simile to a metaphor by cutting out the word "like" which I suddenly don't, and now I pass a brother out front of his house digging a hole in the grass between the sidewalk and the street as if putting in a new mailbox or planting a small tree or maybe just burying something we won't mention and I turn on to Brigantine Blvd. which is limited to one lane because a crew clad in yellow T-shirts with lavender lettering that reads "TCM Paving" is redoing the asphalt and I want to pull out my iPod but my Shure 535e earbuds are too good at isolating outside noise which is dangerous on this busy street and now I'm rising up one side of the bridge between Brigantine and Absecon islands and I peep white birds wheeling in the sky and that signs on the Borgata Casino and Harrahs are both purple and just as I crest the bridge and get buffeted by the gusts Brigantine is famous for, there's a notification on my iPod Touch that Derri has commented on her FB post,  "It's not fair that he's gone" and I stop to check Twitter and Prince is trending with over 2 million tweets and I peer over the railing and consider the sunlit water making its way to the Back Bay, but before I can click on the link I'm back in my room in Blanchard Barracks on Bolling AFB with Penny half covered in a military issue blanket and me with one hand cupping the back of her neck and the other pinning her head to keep it from sliding into the metal frame and us gutterral in the rhythm of the moment until "Do Me Baby" begins to unroll from the radio and she pulls her fingernails from my back and reaches for the knob and we turn it up, the bed squeaking and Penny and I just glistening . . .

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