My Father Sleeps Rough in His Dreams
In Burbank we shared a zip code with the quality in Toluca Lake where movie stars lived, Bob Hope and the man who invented Musak. Pop would write Toluca Lake as our return town. At night I'd sneak into the country club lit by the industrial neon of all that is fantastical about this country, Universal Studio and its parking lot flood lights. My rubber Zories squished grass made
spongy by man's design to turn desert into golf course, cool and dewy. Once a squat man, a mole man, leaned against a shadow holding onto a tree. (The man leaned, the shadow clutched the tree.) His blue jeans were baggy like a movie farm-hand's and held up with rope. His face misunderstood. My rubber feet winged it home, where Mom sat reading up on Transcendental coping with Mortal Mind. My father slept rough in his dreams. In some, his brothers scratched “90027” on blue envelopes to be carried, like a lame prince, from New York to California.
Complexities Run Interference
There are reasons you sign on for years of adult learning and continuing ed sections. The fool's at it again the registrar snickers as a victimy organ near your heart thumps. It thinks it's a rabbit's foot. Think again, unlucky thumper. This life — thing is slimy. Hard to get a grip on which does what, Free Will being watermelon seedy as whim skittering between thumb and forefinger. Once, you raced to pay a bill by deadline. Needed polychrome Her. Touchstone. Safe mother. Locked doors opened and when he came to mop, man, did that Brother jolt. You were accepting of signs. So what if they laugh. Each generation gets hoary and stupid, wants its blunders pyre-worthy. Wants the fledglings to learn, lucky thumpers.
Sarah Sarai's poems are in Barrow Street, Ethel, Boston Review and other journals. Her second
poetry collection will be published in 2020.