Columbus Claims this Nation for the Spanish

Another bad day for
miles all around. Fifty-five degrees daytime high and
all the stores closed for
someone else’s holiday, except the sound exchange that’s
in the vague Manhattan way where it’s
essentially a fashion.

We are wearing
natural fabrics. We don’t
believe in love.
Even from the iris of your eye
I am cleaving free
new territories.


We are from
small towns. They used
to be smaller, used
to not even exist.

We are crossing off our reading lists, my
library copy of The Origin of Species, with circles around all
references to sex, left there by some excitable fifth-grader
or clergyman.

Your Guns, Germs, and Steel, you twist your neck to see me.
what would happen if all this was still the forest?
          —I guess we’d fall the eight stories to the ground.

You grab my hand and press it firm against the mattress. A man on the radio is
talking about fences. Then the weather. It’s another bad day.

For miles all around,
it’s been raining. The topsoil
bleeds out from
the belly of your planter’s box.
People think they own things.

You and I somehow
find ourselves on our feet, twisted free of the blanket like two
reborn monarch butterflies, like a whole row of the neighbours’
escaped perennials.

Come plant yourself on the deck. Hold the rail.
Smile at the tourists and the wave, wave,
wave of the parade.