How to eat a Mexican plum

Find one

That is somewhere

Between firm and squishy

Wipe the cloudy bloom away

To see the lovely planetary

Reds and purples

 

Nick the leathery

Thin skin

With your teeth

And suck out

The tart

Insides

 

Toss the pit

And slack purple skin

 

Then

Squish a few beneath your feet

Watch the orange insides

Slide out

Slick and sticky

As the skin bursts

Because that feels good too

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Sorry

A Richwood mom

Almost killed us today

In her white SUV

 

You were in my mirror spot

She called

 

But at least

Her hair was blown out

Fisher

In the mountains

There was a small pond

Surrounded by high granite walls

And lush berry bushes

With velvety pale green leaves

Like upturned hands

 

I found a fish

Silver, iridescent

Gaping in the shallows

 

Whether it was stuck in the shallows

And dying

Or the other way around

Didn’t trouble me

 

It was big enough

That I had to pick it up

With both my hands

To toss it back

Into the black water

Where it disappeared

 

But in that moment

There was communion

When our eyes met

Which maybe is what fishers seek

Not the moment of capture

But the moment of release

Karate girl

A young girl

face baby round

curly hair barely contained

in a ponytail

wearing a belted black

Karate suit

 

Steps out of the dojo

(which is the school gym)

to eat her potato chips

sour cream and onion

 

which seems

incongruous

A brief history of streaking

Kenny Brinkman

Short, stocky, muscular

A soccer player

His gleaming grille of a smile

Sheathed in a gorilla mask

Ran through the quad

Calves bulging in glory

Bounding towards the getaway car

In which the Merry Pranksters waited

Camera rolling

 

Kenny, vision impaired

By the inadequate slits in the black rubber

(My god it was hot in there)

Knocked over a girl

A freshman

Whose mother wrote for the local paper

And whose threats forced the school

To identify and suspend

The Streaker

 

For three days

The Merry Pranksters joined him

Smoking pot in solidarity

And watching choice video footage

 

A posse of male swimmers

Made little effort to disguise themselves

Wearing only black Zorro masks

They brazenly made their way through the quad

At a leisurely jog

The sight of their penises

Veiny and pendulous

Pointing different directions

But always down

Was the first real look

For many of the girls

And was so frightful

It put many of them off sex

For months and

In some cases

Years

 

Having made it impossible

For the authorities

To look the other way

The boys were sidelined for a league meet

Costing them the section title

 

Rosalind Frances was the first girl

To do it

She wore a cardboard box

With two little eye holes cut out

Like some avant-garde performance artist

Her body was thin and angular and pale

She ran like a deer

Through the lunch crowd

Disappearing around a corner

It was all so straightforward

We were left silent and a little baffled

By what we had seen

And what we had not

Such as it is

We take it on faith

That this little rectangle of green

Smaller than a postage stamp on the screen

Surrounded by gray

Will be a living, breathing

Thing that will envelop us

 

And it does

There is a forest

Such as it is

The canopy close and dense

And a stream

That we all agree

Is surprisingly clear

There is a tree with

Orange, star-topped fruit

By a murky pond

A patch of mud shines with ants

Portioning out

A moldering cricket

 

But even in the center

Where the trees and thorny vines surround us

Hold us in their itchy embrace

Where the sound of water

Is the first sound

Even there

The detritus from the encroaching world

Cups and bottle and wrappers

Bloom like fungus

 

And topping the hill

Such as it is

We can see the surrounding

Cage of stripmalls

Streets of oversized houses

And anemic trees

 

If I hem in my view

I can almost imagine

What it might have been once

When the boundaries were pushed outwards

To their unpaved conclusions

Ocean, desert, pine forest, prairie

But the cranes in my periphery

Pivot me forward

To where the boundaries creep inward

And I wonder how long

This pocket of green

Can hold its contents

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