NaPoWriMo Day 28 – The Son I (Benni)

Standard

I saw you through the door
to the kitchen
an old man’s white head.
The coat in the hallway
shaped by your absence
photos and calendars from years
that no longer exist.
So, sometimes, we have to
live years gone by.
Bent on the table, clutching your arms
as if the world
could escape them. Counting
rips on the tablecloth.
Stubborn.
Father.

I want to not count the floors
in the slowly hissing lift
inside this ugly building
I want to not sigh with relief
when I get out
of these tired walls
I want to be close to you
but I can’t.
The waves take me
to an ocean of light outside
where thundering water falls
into videogame arcades, beating engines
faraway sounds Japan Redondo Seattle
flashes, stars, bonus, new weapons
Mortal Kombat levels like never
in your dreams.
And her eyes, picking me through
perfumes and lying adverts.
Her reflection in the shop window.
Her movements as she wraps
hairspray for happy fascists
hairgel for trolls, spray-on for pixies
smells of the Party
stuffed marines Barbie corpses
tenors fake do-gooders, artists fake evil-doers
been dead for years on a chair
of the Bates Motel top floor.

But me and her together in traffic
ineffable twin clouds.
Before the night’s yellow sun
of a young jaguars’ fast-food
heavy-breathing, on streets
where dealers are brothers
pills, amphetamines, prozac, swords
here I fight and sing
can you hear me father?

You who defended me roaring
you who guarded my fever
and my first idea of death
you who hesitated outside school
unsure, enter or not, and watched me
play through the fence, in the nettles
on the short grass of a modest battle.
You who still seek more bread, more milk
old without a job
wounded, dark, Aztec with no land
how can I tell you that I get high
on what might kill you
on the city and its snakes
on the moon-giant burning
these roofs tonight
and says, you’ll see her, tomorrow
the most beautiful, the only one, the one
who carries her beauty around
like thirst, like a name
like something you don’t need.

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