Fête champêtre!

There’s this attractive girl at the compound;
Her father and mine are friends.
Co-workers, really.
(Our mothers lunch together.)
She grew up in Tennessee and will go back someday.
She’s not exotic.
No neon
In her hair like the Indians,
Or the restaurants and shops they work in Doha
With the wild pink and blue curls, burning
Into the dark. They beat with Western sounds.
The New Downtown is coming
Like an eager pop tune,
Born from metallic seeds dropped from cranes –
Beat-beat, beat, beat-beat, beat –
That later spring up from the sand
steel scaffold skeletons
Wearing glass, wires. Think of it: whole organisms
Danced to electronic life on pop music! At some point
They will have little establishments at their feet,
With that fresh, ionized hair burning
Like the others,
And this neon ecology will grow. Out, out,
Even into the water.
Soon there will be innumerable reflections:
And a series of Arabic curlicues beneath,
Moving with the tide.
This brings to mind the hookah bar
Where we enjoyed each other’s company but knew
There was a distance waiting to come on,
An oil-black ocean
Swelling, stretching between:
“I’m looking at LSU, but we’ll see.”
“Oh yeah?” “Yeah,
I think I want to study biology.”
But there are voltaic
Fish just outside, I think to say,
Remembering the reflections curling
To American time.
Because that beat hits the Mideastern waters,
Too, which licked the warped wooden pillars
(the bar was on the shore)
That night in response, reminding
Us how far away from home we were,
Saying, Shhh, shhh, shhh.
Against the rows of dead tourists’
Catamarans they breathed too,
But not in a calming way – no, continually growing
Louder, as if forcing us into silence.
I remember thinking, the Gulf must not like
What’s playing at the bar
For the expatriates.
Shhh. Shhhh. “Man,” – beat-beat –
“You’ve got to try
The strawberry.” SHHHH.
There will be tankers plowing the sea
When morning comes.

Joshua Miner
from DM 86 ~ Fête champêtre
{click le pic to enter The Macabrely}



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