Wednesday, December 1, 2021

Three Poems, Henry Lara



Once a goddess,
She remembers a time 
when the older records inside her, 
played romance
But never motherhood
Dandelion days
Paris nights, 
and Prince Edward oysters
They are much too far now
Damaged phonographic needle
and departed roars
She stretches for their memory
And with an unused womb
There's no one to touch her 
Submerged in aloofness, subtle words now flow from her eyes 
Now, in the midst of the nickel
She is a riddle that cannot be answered
Her speaking voice has no engagements
It's her mental voice which strikes the thunder
Basic math has brought her here, 
and in silence, 
The radiator waits 
She sits
They warm each other
The violin plays


In her search for security, she hasn't been able to find anything stable

As she ages, it gets worse

Voucher after voucher she's landed in randomness

SRO's have brought temporary relief but life has had its ways to subtract her additions

Bridges have covered her back but not her needs

Chapel shelters have brought temporary faith

Stolen tents and lost provisions bring a shrug, she wonders what's next

As she forages, she finds nutrition but instabilities and uncertainty line up on the radar

Hail Marys bring transient results

The new high-risers shine, senior housing stalls

The constant changing of her powerful city owes her nothing, there's nothing her strength can do

Her lifelines are running away—

Without technology, her process is slowed

She smells a few last opportunities so she goes to the payphone, sits on what's left.

She thinks of a biscuit and coffee as she inserts her coins

She hopes the receiver on the other side of the landline has acceptable news


It is not near, but it is not quite far                                                                                                                         
She can see the guillotine being prepared from a distance 
Usually, in her vicinity, it is put to use about once a week                                                                                  
Claiming up to four on a bad week
Earlier at dawn, her friend fried away in the hot oil canister                     
Sweltering drippings, mincers, basucos, cleavers and nose candy are rampant in her sector, 
eager to administrate their order                                                                                                                                           
The smack is loose and in a constant hunt for her                                                                                              
She knows exactly where they are, her effort to dodge them is weak       
They smell frailty in her organs and are ready to take her wit                                                                               
Her heart is bitter for them, there is a vast space within requiring them to swim in her  
It disregards their bad intentions and keeps the pumps for them coming 
The panacea is empty and the swine plays tag                                                                                                    
She hides behind the trash bin with rats as large as castoroides                                                                         
The sun will soon come up, it will be an open field of targets, the little red dots will rarely 
be missed                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        
She will circle the bathhouses                                                                                                                                 
The soup lines                                                                                                                                                            
The free concerts                                                                                                                                                        
The needles                                                                                                                                                               
The wretched                                                                                                                                                             
The The Councilman                                                                                                                                                         
The Mayor                                                                                                                                                                     
The Law, the word of the holy spirit                                                                                                                  
Vultures will continue their flight                                                                                                                                                                                
And her rest                                                                                                                                                    
And her hunger                                                                                                                                                           
And her peace  
Will remain on hold     

Henry Lara is a writer from Los Angeles. His work has been featured in Dryland, Issue 8, 2018, Zyzzyva No.119, 2020 and The Los Angeles Review, 2021. His work is inspired by the city and the people of Los Angeles. Henry is on Instagram @ Angeleno Heart.                                                                                                                             

No comments:

Post a Comment