Just Like Us, But Thicker
for Alli Warren
The photograph of the Golden Gate Bridge has been retouched so that a football crowd rises out of the fog. Each foam hand grips a McDonald’s Adult Happy Meal. The crawl says MEAT PEOPLE. I turn the page and there she is, the old one in the yellow polyester coat, grinning and pointing. Pornographic reveal. We can’t pretend anymore that the air isn’t full of little vortices turning with locked-in teeth: as if it could have been empty? Preserves lined up in tiny jars extend to the horizon. The sign has nothing to do with anything else and thus is allowed to refer to reality.
I was embarrassed to have been caught reading poetry over your shoulder, when in fact I was reading your shoulder.
Jail is a future heirloom. There’s nothing left to steal so we had to make something up and post a copy on every door. It’s inevitable that someone would come along and try to make sense of what we’d written, while we watched from a remote location. Fried egg eyes, chicken nose, bacon smile.
This would be the ideal place for a bumper sticker. Each one has no thickness but if you stack enough of them they will.