Pudding House Publications
Pudding House Chapbook Series
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It’s before coffee and after everything else.
A Sotho policewoman waves us to the side
of the road with a flashlight. 100 kilometers
behind us, Johannesburg goes to sleep. Corn,
purple, orange, weapon. Johann says,
Here, an hour in a cell is a death sentence.
He pulls his hands from the steering wheel,
lips trying to close over the end of a Peter
Stuyvesant. Handcuffs. A pig on a spit.
Gumboots in a souvenir shop. How quickly
we would sell our misery and our love. History
is this ear of corn, and this Giant Kingfisher,
licking blood from an eel. His wings
mock the Southern Cross and I pray
for Andromeda. The policewoman speaks
in mirrors, almost in retrospect,
side-views. Her wings
bury our brandies
with Johann’s 100-rand note.
We will live today
to change our socks
and lower the parking brake,
this time, as if, into the earth.