Odysseus of D Street

He has wandered

concentric streets

scattering his saga

in leprous bits

for the poets to pick up

gathering his jewels

in plastic tarps

and shopping carts

led by a siren song

no one else hears


the years in his beard

hold the sagas the poets

will never tell


He follows Aeolian winds

through clapboard canyons

and chain-link alleys

treasure bags hung

from his shopping-cart ship

stalks the clattering birds

for weather reports and neighborhood myths

navigates by streetlamp stars

and passing headlight comets


the hissing leaves of urban trees

fill his dusty head with

the loose crumbs of the streets

calling the tones of lover gods

he will chase without looking

to see if theyve found him


at night, its another world

every sidewalk crack yawns wide

to devour his ship

suspicious nightbird eyes

glow otherworldly red

and other things fly across the moon

city windows look upside

down in night light

blind to his quest

for a dry porch to hide him

from the things the poets

cannot name


He will wander decaying streets

until he himself has decayed

beyond the reach of the birds

coaxial time

lost upon itself

and his ghost

eyes closed,

still sailing

D Street.




copyright Kimberly White 2004

published in Suisun Valley Review



Collage Art