Antlers on my Head, Silene in my Teeth
In the dream
I ride the boy’s bike home up hill much steeper
odd hills parks where roads might be. I think
this is the town of my grandfather.
I pass friends on grass with beers they wave.
Streets that should be easy turn into stairs.
I go toward town: narrow roads some dark tall
buildings canyons I go down to go up.
Cars people shout I turn unintended ways.
I must attend a friend’s ritual performance
suicide with my deer antlers on.
Carry bike up fire escape: handlebars
antlers catch in trees– woven with silene
tough wiry stems cling tight from when I found them
My grandmother hated this silene:
the way you couldn’t get rid of it
the way you’d pull and pull and just get
handfuls of leaves, stem still planted firmly
the way it climbs and strangles what it can.
silene on antlers catches trees pulls
yanks my head so hard some silene left
behind, some silene I carry more
to burden to restore redeem the antlers.
Through window I go lay boy’s bike down see
friend display case sprawled. We range in
office museum store
classroom top floor high above town
a place for condors and preserving them.
Charles runs it teaches sells books puppets stuff;
phone rings. My friend lays on case wrapped in
condor skin red flesh of face on his face
hooked bill oily black ruff great wing feathers
one extends under him the other close.
Hi my friend says head lifts he grins blinks. Glad
you could make it. He is joyous not ironic. I am sweaty.
Out of breath. Late. He doesn’t care. I am
there. I smile back lean with bike on warm wall.
Charles gets off the phone and in that great room
red yellow black cream Chumash rock art hangs
cases full of the precious the rare
dark raw walnut trims huge paned windows
draws light inside hues of evening sky
with us gathered there: He begins again.
based on notes from a dream 2/17/07 when nila northSun was visiting
jump on the train!