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A pinwheel in the heart spins off oxygen like sparks
people singing anthems try to cover with their hands.
A pure Indonesia under my pillow opens its markets
every night to music, caged birds brought to be let go
recalling the man who after winning the lottery tried
to buy out of business all the pet stores in Orlando.
Tony is writing up another confessional nightmare,
his universe made offhandedly by a young punk god
still working on his first, in which teeth and neon
play inordinate roles with willful murder. After all,
who are we seeing most: those shooting husbands,
who has the corkscrew dick, who owns the unbearable
and must pay and pay, ministers of slave-making,
body-snatching, those repaying through the nose.
In mine, nothing is concise. Cats are not required.
And no churchmen, only the college of red cardinals,
flames alight on pyracantha, surviving cold & color,
where in no time, stars on my arm, I am in Jakarta.
Allan Peterson is author of two books—All the Lavish in Common, which received the 2005 Juniper Prize, and Anonymous Or—and four chapbooks. His work has appeared in Prairie Schooner, Bellingham Review, Perihelion, Stickman Review, Marlboro Review, and The Massachusetts Review.
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