The garden with its jade muscles,
designer absinthe perfume,
its wild flowers’ purple teeth grinding the outer
of a wire fence,
with its addiction to youth,
its cayenne peppers and lusty eggplants
parading in magenta make-up and morning-glory
This garden is about to explode!
The chili peppers and yellow tomatoes
alone could spell doom
for thousands now ordering exotic drinks in
Take a moment.
Think about all the crude monarchies
that had progressive intelligence
beheaded or burned at the stake,
then quartered at the bloody seams of
think about ancestors, strangers, lovers,
all those who’ve ushered you
through the doors of alien existence.
Now, how do you really feel about gardens,
seeing as how this one
is only two weeks old?
Alan Britt © 2009
The Cicadas of 2004
You can smell their bodies rotting.
A humid smell
of kitchen garbage about to offend,
inspiring its removal to the 45-gallon plastic garbage can
with a lid that fits
like a fighter pilot’s helmet.
While the odor isn’t overwhelming,
I do check myself.
The pulsating decibels
and layers of cicadas at this moment
resemble metallic rings of color
in a rainbow
still clinging to the ragged, pea-soup shirttail
of an abusive tornado.
There’s this tremendous rattling of beads.
Ten billion rattlesnakes
stirring from hibernation.
The whole thing resembles a universal pulse,
although no such pulse
has ever existed.
Two mockingbirds manage to sneak through their serrated
The occasional oriole sends his quick loop through a brief lull,
but not much else penetrates
this thick living wall
this ecstatic chanting
that first inspired Aztec myths.
And that omnipresent din deep in the background,
the sound of flying saucers
from 1950’s science fiction films,
having appeared docile at first
the way rumors of the Mongol hordes
terrorized the sophisticated clergies of 12th Century
But, today, these cicadas, through mythological gills
filter the most beautiful atoms the universe has ever
the atoms of Jesus, Blake, Gandhi, Neruda.
Alan Britt © 2009