now clean and sober, pain-free
and with a twinkle in his eye,
suggests breakfast at the nearest IHOP.
His sponsor has seen this gambit before,
knows how it will end, and which
waitress his sexless companion will target.
Hates to fresh hell and back again
being this clown’s wingless man.
A Streetcar named Phat Tuesday
cruises through the Big Easy and the Quarters where everyone is dressed in odd
or even, either outrageous or inrageous. Those not in drag are dressed in anti-drag.
Almost all are costumed stylishly as invisible diplomats (not dipsomaniacs), ambassadors of anguished ambiguity, puppet masters of perturbation, acrobats of
nostalgia, Kings of Queens and Queens of Kings, (It is New Orleans after all! - pay attention), jugglers of open veins, carpenters of catastrophes, dowagers of resonating
doubts, zoologists of Xenophobia. The Audubon zoo has arranged day passes for all. Lions in leotards, flamingos testing the waters of tap-dancing, alligators cross-snouting
as crocodiles, monkeys flinging poo at their 96% genome distant cousins (not so distance that a well-aimed missile can’t hit), a purple tongued giraffe gargling
chardonnay, and boa constrictors squeezing the musical life out of bagpipes, what little there is, but sounding like a piano duel between Professor Longhair & James Booker.
Otherwise Normal Man (ONM)
became a cross-dresser of drawers one ordinary day.
Choiced with an eerie eyrie, an oodle or ologies,
an ooze of eel, a surd of syllables, or impersonating
imperfectly a double-laméd llama, he chose instead
natural wood. Nothing fancy. No Brazilian mahogany
or thousand-year African Baobab. Sturdy oak instead.
Tongue-in-groove. Lightly lacquered. Easy on the eyes.
Wide grained with only a hint of its dry years showing.
Rest assured they are discrete. Not even the cat suspects
his enamoré. They are a happy pair it seems in a committed
relationship. No paperwork. No doilies. Light dusting only.
(The au pair who also cleans once a fortnight, but never
on a Sunday, swears and would do so in court if asked,
convincingly - they are a perfectly matched set,
suited for each other). And moreover, are destined
to be Reality TV stars soon as there’s a liberal Supreme court.
Richard Weaver hopes to one day once again volunteer with the Maryland Book Bank, City Lit, the Baltimore Book Festival, and return as writer-in-residence at the James Joyce Pub. Other pubs include: North American Review, Crazyhorse, New England Review, Southern Quarterly, Loch Raven Review, & Poetry Magazine. He’s the author of The Stars Undone (Duende Press, 1992), and provided the libretto for a symphony, Of Sea and Stars (2005), performed 4 times to date. Recently, his 160th prose poem was published. He was one of the founders and former P E of the Black Warrior Review.