Polly feeds the automated Nelson
and table speakers belt out phrases like
“Down in Muskogee, under the flood,
my crop of potatoes is buried in mud.”
in an accent as elastic as chewing gum.
Our conversation is a parsed string
strung between loud pauses.
On the stage, a comic is poised
in suspended imitation, scattered laughter
reflects a chill of human kindness.
Regret is a powerful fixative.
I pour myself a measured quart of fate
and remember when divine intervention
was the only form of birth control.
Polly smiles at me from miles away, when
in Pawhuska, lying on warm stone at dewfall,
our microphone captured a Precambrian language
of clicks, whistles, and zithering sounds.
We were lost in the illation of being,
ourselves as suspended emanations of God.
So here I am at the Electric Avocado,
bonded with a pixilated crowd,
a wreath of smoke over all, thoughts
of Pall Malls and pall bearers, and
really, there is no Polly, now.