SPOTLIGHT: Dream Highway by Alan Britt

LOVE POEM THAT LEADS ME
TO A FLORIDA CANAL

The bandoneon transports me
to your coy lips
posing as a Cnidian orchid
climbing a late summer trellis
toward your throat.

Orchid like a verb
struggling
with existence.

Orchid
like a lover
from the grave,
as lovers
often appear
from graves.

Beautiful.

Impossible to resist one orchid’s
splendor behind Spanish moss sheltering
a scrub oak’s shoulder blade.

A night-crowned heron
orbits the moon’s penumbra.

Oak moon.

Moon tumbled dry
until wisdom
separates lovers
from their linear minds.

A caballero strikes a wooden match
in a Juarez cantina.

With her wooden heel an old woman
caresses the dusty floor
below her barstool
while senoritas, with red and green
illusions ruffling their peasant waists,
flock the dancefloor
like minnows bobbing
below the two-lane 4 Points bridge
for swollen crusts of bread rippling
a Southeastern Florida canal.

EARLY MORNING SONG

White dew oozes from wild rose thorns
shredding a streetlight’s polyester gown.

Dream in its final hour tattered by voices
at the frozen eye of orbit.

Without notice I stub those voices
out one by one like dying cigarettes.

THE WIDOW’S COOKIES

A widow off Tuscaloosa Avenue
offered cookies
that became famous
overnight.

Her cookies had raisons,
oatmeal
and chocolate chips
that attracted kids
for blocks,
ejecting them from jalousies
like moths fleeing fascist porchlights,
moths that resembled chipped fingernails
applauding Lord Chamberlain
as he took his suite at the Globe.

To this very day, formally emancipated,
these moths devour the widow’s fresh
cookies like ashes rising
above the halogen flames
of existence.

They dance
and dance
blurring their wings
into smoke.

A LOVE POEM OF SORTS

Our heads bob like coconuts along the moonlit Gulf.

Lovers arrange coconuts
into a Polynesian marriage ritual
around a watery Saturn.

Our heads bob freely.

On pillows of faith.

Our heads
know there’s danger—
they’ve absorbed six centuries of German fairytales;
they’ve digested world wars and Wall Street disasters.

But our heads fall
asleep, anyway.

Minor earthquake beneath the Black Sea
creates minor headaches.

Otherwise,
coconuts bob along,
mostly happy
to be alive.

THREE-LAYERED POEM

Green ink tattoos imagination.

Inside gated communities with residents in zebra camouflage mugged by zombies unable to escape their feral fears causing residents to ram their SUVs through

the wrought-iron gates of gilded communities.
A shadow dancer rises in a Juárez tavern, scrapes
her left heel twice against the existential dust of a

dancefloor then slowly resurrects young men, plus clouds of middle-aged geezers from the sunlit penumbra of a dream, or what some folks identify

simply as the scheme of things.

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