At the city dump,
this oily mist makes the day dark as the night that will come soon as they dig for that last rotten fig or the wormy apple or a maggoty bone.
Their kids are most active; diving here & losing their footing & sliding in the slime & grunge & carrying
off the prized pieces of gristle & sinew & fat.
It seems like underground. The drifter comes to her for solace & a kiss & she turns away & looks to the floor where a roach scurries & now
he goes to the man who scratches his leg & bleeds & scratches his face & bleeds & scratches his arm & his neck & leers at her but will not speak to him & . . . &
at the shore
it’s another who’s come to lay out her eggs – all two thousand – cracked, one at a time, until the beach is full & swimming in eggs &
the tide rises & sweeps away the first row & back they come & the second & the third goes out & back & all two thousand yolks & the tide rises & . . . &
she eats her onion,
gnawing through its pale skin, gnawing the bitter & the sweet, the juicy & the sparse & as she gnaws she drools & bites the air &
tells the story of being herself & the large size of her breasts & the too large size of her ass & the size of her long nose without complaint &
whatever she needs she will have & as she gnaws she talks of what is expected & how & what she will not & spits & bites the air & eats . . .& now the eggs are whipped in the waves & go on to the next life without a life to live & so they will lie in the froth & foam & bear witness &
the garbage mound is rank & the garbage mound is rancid & the harvesters shuffle to the beat of their hunger & their fallen pride & dig & sort & . . . &
even now, no one will speak out & no one will touch the other & the onion eater sneers & the onion eater jokes & she is not afraid & will eat another & bites the air & grins.
At the city dump,