Bury Angels First

LA kicks her in the nose. 

The freeway gives way to cars 

moving far too fast to matter, 

blurring screens of silver nitrate and light.  

If she could see through the make-up 

she would watch a family sit

in tight circles around a Rabbi, 

around a plot of land as small as a closet

within a section, cornered off for the Jewish dead 

overlooking a lake which looks like a mouth 

grown drunk on Manischewitz. 

LA pours its paint like a Pollack, 

each drag of the brush composing 

patterns of traffic accidents over patterns 

of gun fights, on abstract patterns of growing old.  

It's not a symphony which accounts for LA’s refusal 

to feel the wind’s tongue against its neck, 

or to stare at spread petals, 

or even to love the salty taste of its young.  

In LA white beaches are as precious as genius.  

It is true that no one counts on pain to change the mind. 

The weather makes comparisons easy to cover-up.  

LA is a blond asleep on her blanket, 

As the sun burns her skin, 

vulnerable to honesty.

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