Aug 15


by Alan Britt

Perhaps they spin counterclockwise
whenever they need to, then clockwise
on a dime, plus all the wises in-between.

Navigating by atoms & gravity,
understood as a freak of natural power,
as most powers appear to be a freak of something,
navigating by blistering atoms without exploding them
& winning hand in marriage
at a gardenia & camellia wedding
of souls orbiting gravity
as only a gravity wedding with its meteorites
& lethal cosmic dust can muster,
but you fell in love with the universe,
the largest spread of real estate available.

I’d like to know how many
species can survive
your chemical eye shadow
across this wobbly blue planet called Earth.

This measly planet gasping its last few parrots
while waddling alligator loafers
& double-lined suits of every toxic dye
into the annual summit on Global Warming,
leaning on a cane whittled from the Bolivian rainforest
by security forces sent to protect
the planet from civilized barbarians?

Why this planet, out of millions & trillions
of planets at our disposal,
why scraggly, still in its infancy (& I promise you
this is true) vagrant of the galaxy (says the crazy man
featured at the Visionary Art Museum in Federal Hill),
this feral, half-mammal, half-reptile,
half-paramecium, ungodly planet?