From the Rat’s Mouth: After George Ella Lyon

by Patricia Reed

I am from the sand,
from salty ebbing Dreamland
I am from lightening bugs trapped in a Mason jar
(luminous dance lulling me to the hum of land.)
I am from hibiscus blooming magenta,
the palm tree that smacks
me with her flowing arms.

I am from lemon ice pops and two-toned fluorescent socks,
from Publix and Second Time Around,
potato salad and Dad’s Root Beer,
from hurricane snacks and sticky vinyl seats.

I am from Carol and Victor,
I’m from the yeah, yeah, yeahs
and the what about the time crop.
I am from the bread and the blood,
the confessional box,
and agony Jesus nailed with a loincloth.

The South County Fair and the Mouseketeer ears
silhouetted against a firecracker sky
recalling memories
of shuttles never launched,
barracuda jaws, and pelican throats
engulfed in saltwater
and stinging my eyes.

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