poems by Rena J. Mosteirin

Blog Archive

Friday, March 19, 2010

Lessons from the Midwest

The lake water thickens you.
(You will emerge red and itch pesticides and pests.)

It will become necessary to practice restrictions.
(Once these start they are impossible to stop.)

So far from the ocean you may begin to believe in tropical sorcery.
(Religious guys have the worst facial hair
so you can spot them and avoid them.)

I saw a seagull flying over the Great Plains.
She must have fallen asleep on the train from Pasedena
and woke up feeling sick. Now she's flying circles like a lasso.

(I will lasso you with my shirt
pull you in by the teeth.)

If you've ever wanted to be a whale, you will understand what happens next:
armed with the ocean, I call the gull home.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Saintly Rednecks With Hand Grenades

Paper bags stuffed with cash in the fridge.
Almost two grand/ the beginning of the end.

It's the final countdown (da-da da da)
and everybody's couting down differently.

Two trailer park girls go round the outside, round the outside, round the outside
of the fields, wintercut

and scalloped by snowy ridges/ hills like little bombs
lines of trees/ one old silo and one old barn/ to so many cold little homes.

Everybody's at the basketball game (they all used to play horse without me
in the used-up coal lot over there/ I was glad when they tore

that shitty hoop down/ the other kids still play in the raw cokes)
and Ma's in the shower by herself/ glad to have the trailer whole

so she can swallow it with a song she's been holding all wrong since 1994:
What's the frequency Kenneth be-show, things have changed, uh-huh...

I am playing a game I invented myself with old hand grenades,
feeling like the father of basketball with his peach baskets nailed to the wall.

I'm doing lift the pin/ pull the spoon and swoosh! I'm a holding and throwing
those hissing old pineapples

and then the explosions/ send trailers into the sky
over the endless fields scalloped by snowy ridges like the lace around the face of an owl.
If you lived here you'd be dead by now.