I never saw so raped a countryside,
this Oklahoma "City" so-called...
the derricks jacking in and out, obscene
beside the swings, the library... crude rules;
mall posterboard and neon wink their lies
across the Broadway shaft, like mica flickers
across a pit, across the tumbling wrappers...
like condoms, sacks of children's souls... pale
along the median. Never saw a hell
to match this drive-through. When the Monarchs
arrived, they waggled in alternative
rush-hour flow, in cloverleafs mid-air,
among the starving greens of Lowes and Target.
More migrants -- lovely, sure, but only Okies --
they spawn, they go, their wings like hot-rod flames,
some Heineken-green, never saw the like
before... once, in glossy springtime, Cape Cod,
a luna moth, a monster, startled me,
and it was green, and I thought, Dickinson,
gone midnight, strange, her "noon" gone moon; I thought,
Nabokov, sexy lepidopterist,
ripe youth and beauty in his net... Now,
these Red-Dirt flyers, scribbling on the air,
it's like a note you jot in mid-commute,
no poem. Autumn's on us, Hallowe"en,
the black and orange... décor that's not unlike
these blossom-cruisers: Little People, up
on brooms, their dance to Satan stained the blood
of sunset; male hooks female; howling mute,
invisible yet vivid upward love coils,
a couple climbing spiral steeps, at work
against the vertigo, a pair of pilgrims...