By Dan Pinkerton
Amid the purr of two-stroke engines
the surf belched little turtles onto the sand
each grain of which was composed
in a Taiwanese factory. The dizzying
ocean-borne scent of unleaded,
overhead the moon a porcelain fixture,
trees filament-filled, shatterable.
The man in the bar drew back the corners
of his handkerchief to reveal the egg
which when touched to your ear
produced a bomb-like ticking. Fry it, bury it,
entrust it to a museum? Humidity
curled along the coast, courtesy
of Lockheed Martin’s great turbines,
synthetic palms swaying and groaning.
In the hotel room sex was administered
intravenously, files corrupted.
We were preoccupied, that was our error code.
As teens we would wander the vacant lots
seeking out weeds where the asphalt buckled.
Flowers were a stretch. Even a dandelion would’ve
stopped our hearts. The Earth had not been
retrofitted, the bodies in orbit not yet
repurposed. Our ancient moon appeared
bedraggled, a door hanging by one hinge.
The exiled part of us kept gleaming
even though cold to the touch.
Dan Pinkerton’s work has recently appeared or is forthcoming in Boulevard, Reed, Harpur Palate, Chicago Quarterly Review, and Green Mountains Review. Pinkerton lives in Urbandale, Iowa.
Originally appeared in NOR 29