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spacer.gif   Frank Matagrano
Posted by : cj on Friday, December 03, 2004 - 05:01 PM
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Poetry:  Click On The Author's Name Dreaming of the Neighbor’s Wife

I am not the only one who does it, but mine begins
with a green crane on display in the foyer, the two of us speculating
whether the bird is a three hundred year old heirloom with a history
of cursed owners, or just the result of slave labor in the burnt umber
hills of Niujuan, a forgotten hamlet where a plague of rats crawled
down from the mountains to feed on a potato crop born
from a late summer blessing of rain; and only mine involves
a conversation about rough-straw paper, how it was spread
under dead bodies as an absorbent during Qian Long’s reign
and how the town-home association would throw a fit if we dared
to husk bamboo with pestle and mortar, the stench from a kiln
reaching all the way to Jaycee Park; and only mine reckons
with the threat of voodoo: a bowl of rice and pennies left
at the back door, cooking oil thrown on the kitchen window,
a cow’s tongue drenched in herb and placed
on the front steps, my name, among others, pinned to its side.

 
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