Lipstick, rings, sweat, glitches, beer, trophies,
innumerable vines drooping from tall tales.
Protecting our attentions, cold we tally
a purplish gryphon clambering through the mass
of clinks and wows, happily decapitated.
Thumping and clawful-lonesome, it ruins the fish,
spills someone's joke, muddies up the medley,
hurling a bunch of thick guilts around,
like messy neutrons, balanced only barely.
I start noticing we're standing on sand,
all tiny reunions whining to go home.
You can't be too careful. Somewhere around
the inside of my left elbow a critter scampers.
We buzz around each other swatting flies,
you and I, going foreign on each other.
The appetizers start snoring on death row.
Meanwhile the arch-creature, reaching the middle,
stands stock still and bows a genteel bow.
No, wait, look, it's Annie. You remember her.
Care for something, Annie? She deflects the question,
lifts off, tilts, and flaps easily through us,
a heathen headed for the ineffable clover.
We look around, scratching, starting to notice
uncomfortable things about ourselves and others.
We don't mention any of these things.
We guard the jagged pebbles between our toes.
Someone's daughter is standing on her head,
and our patch of sky is decked with dangling troubles.