Color blind men named the west
or maybe these mountains were once blue
like the women in that dump bar we went to,
swishing their imaginary skirt like a cockatoo,
crazy legs akimbo,
raised hands, palms shoot back the blaring lights
surrender only surrender, as music
bites into the shoulder strap
licks the back hollow where maybe a tat flicker
were they younger
but here, forty, fifty, nothing is as incisive
as that bass.
Mother waited to be asked for,
these daughters of neon need no invitation
to glitter paw, a little detailed toework
or a big, swinging windmill of arms.
Mindful of Descartes first meditation,
they come down
tumble into the first place found,
this crap hole with a loud band;
with the true names of mountains tucked in their smokes
whisper them to each other at work,
tear away the hairnet
curls fall free
and leave the men blue, only blue.
Merridawn Duckler is a poet and conceptual artist from Portland, Oregon. Recent poetry in The Offing, Unbroken Journal, Cleaver, Crab Creek Review, Literary Orphan, Dunes Review, others. Runner-up Arizona Poetry Center, judged by Farid Matuk. Finalist at Center for Book Arts, Tupelo Press, Sozoplo Fiction Fellowship. Fellowships/awards: Writers@Work, NEA, Yaddo, Squaw Valley, SLS in St. Petersburg, Russia, Southampton Poetry Conference, Wigleaf Top 50, others. Editor at Narrative and the international philosophy journal Evental Aesthetics. Her chapbook Interstate is forthcoming with Dancing Girl Press.