First there is the gathering—
sign game, we call it—
pulling thin wire stakes
their deliberate holes.
You, feeding them, I, curled
nest of signs, taking more
in through the window,
around me a metal and cardboard cage.
arrows direct us
to unsuspecting new homes:
our unassuming blue water tower.
there is the supplanting,
the pushing into earth, the
the relocating of signs about town.
of a teacher’s dark lawn,
corner yard–three signs here.
innocent we find it
and yet how much we love it:
uproot a person’s sign
and move the little plastic
pieces of this place
like a squared puzzle, a child’s
Shoes on the Bed
For years you fell asleep
with sneakers on sheets;
you are so proud now, unlacing your
At last, you’ve learned, now that I’d have
with those mud-tracked shoes in my face. The
have changed. My head settles down next to your toes
we are not friends, just upside down lovers.
My feet cuddle up
under your pillows,
our knees quietly kiss goodnight under
Late in the dark you crawl beneath blankets,
and suddenly by my side,
unconsciously reaching around my
So simply our bodies are realigned.
I rub your
socked foot with mine and beg the bed
to tell me why it holds
us head to head.
Zsa Gabor to Kemal Ataturk
Fifteen years a
My sheets pulled tight by a stiff aging
keeper. Of doll houses and diamonds
I dreamed. Older
sisters with fingers on lips,
flowing night gowns floating out
my bedroom door.
Fifteen year Hungarian beauty queen.
sash read “Desire” swaddled me
in my crib,
demanded the eyes and hands
of rich men but deflected them
from my gold.
Darling, you didn’t know me then.
years I slept silent in a binding sash,
in a house
kept by that aging woman.
Fifteen years I drank filtered
you grabbed my gold and made me greedy.
Darling, have you seen
me in the papers
since that night? I’ve schlepped around
and gloss. Wearing gem encrusted night
I’ve searched all the swanky cafes for more
houses and diamonds than you promised.
My pale and tired jewel
strung limbs have slept
limply for life times under loosened
I’ve been collecting their houses, hoping
rival your one man empire with my
many man dominion. I am
now, for my life-long, glamour swaddled search
man to recreate that night.