Slam Granny  
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(Second thoughts on the death of Allen Ginsberg)


We shot this picture of you
   sitting on the edge

   of Lake Michigan, by the shores of Chicago.

Now, its my only map to you Prairie Man. No matter what

your condition, those ARMS are big.

              even with Malibu Millie still tattooed there
   plus some bench marks, not meant for show.

You are a kid in bears arms, familiar,

       as my mother.

              When you love a man long enough
              he gets that family look. my mother's

              after image lingers around the edges

              of your features. Nose, mouth, eyes,

              contours, doubles together in lapsed

              time, long enough to collect a multitude

of fears. I run

     convulsive, into her embrace.

               She catches me just in time, from the fatal fall.

     The last thing I see is your face.

every day, even before the world begins. The first thing, imprinted

     inside me. It bares the look of mourning.


     you means no rescue from the day. I hear you call

     Hello, I'm home, almost

      absently. I trace the path of your face until
                it meets the world

                                 flat, gregarious around your eyes.

                                 I locate your love

                fierce in agony

                glaring at my sight, bloodless,

rusted, from old wars.

                She's frail now,

                blind, speaking to groups about old age.

                Her authority on this grows daily,
                as she slips away again. There comes a time

                you dread, where the lay of the land comes

                true, in the dreams you make up to keep

                it from happening. I pretended I was an orphan

      adopted as something to tide you over.


       to be my mother, you cavorted, fragilely

       your belly to mine. Your shaft volunteers. Coupled,

       we swim in our juices - calm waters and rough seas

   until our tides

                   dual as winds across a prairie,

                   to sit on the edge

the eye of  armed memory.

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