Monday, November 15, 2010

for my friends on the west coast

San Francisco

I used to think California was the Florida of the west coast,
but snowbirds don't flock there, your summers are cold.
Your city name christened Yerba Buena, (the good herb, what irony)
Or perhaps from Saint Francis of Assisi.
Are there stigmata in your hands? In your bridges? Have you ascended yet?

Or are you lost in the grime near the Victorian charm,
where the unique boutiques are really all the same,
but far enough from the trap of the barking on the wharf?
Can you find the piss scented jardín de zapatos, on top of Alamo Square?

Did you know my mother's kin is in the top room of City Lights,
the one with the chairs worn smooth from the bottoms of the beatniks?
"An individual spiderweb identifies a species," he wrote;
his audience heedless to his Identity in a tiny, seed studded town.

But you, your seeds are now in nassella pulchra, and in yellow poppies,
(I plucked one once, it closed in my slumber,)
in impossible heights; in points and hills:
Presidio, Portrero, Parnassus, Portsmouth.

At the north end of the Golden Gate, take the exit at Alexander Ave.
Apparently the colors are best in winter, high as redwoods, wide as the bay.
Cartier-Bresson, voyeurism, and Thiebaud's Three Wind Toys,
the print I thought wouldn't fit on the plane.

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