LA | NY A Special Edition of The East Village

Jen Robinson

Eel Conga

There were plenty of monsters under the bed thirty years ago     Now they're
All grown up into things like friends in mental institutions

I waited on the steps of the
Church across the park for Michael to come out of Beth Israel
He walked right past me and around the corner     I ran after and he turned
and screamed
                "It was like parturition!"

Face-muscles all crunched in
On Second Avenue I hailed a cab     The driver said "Please put on your
seatbelt, miss"

I feel stupid, my mind infertile, and also sad because I'll never go to Bali
                                                         This anything was
always there, waiting to bloom
     with nudity and happiness
A florid unfurling like fast-motion film of seeds sprouting, growing shoots,
flowering, bearing
     fruit, withering, composting and disappearing back into the loam all
In the space of 30 seconds     There, it's done, and a long deep sound
replaces it

Large fish make a slow silvery glide through the cascading tide,
     transported from their natural habitat to a brilliant coral reef where
tiny fish --
Red, green, blue, magenta -- dart by and disappear behind quivering anemones
or into
     vermilion branches
Too bad, the big fish miss their deep-sea home and do not care for the
delights of the shallows

On Broadway below Canal I meet Ava      we lament the state of publishing:
     doesn't carry the independent presses, nor does Borders     It's mind
control circa 1984
Or Fahrenheit 451     Turning onto Leonard we pass the Fahrenheit club
"Ladies Ladies
     come on in"

The quartet sounds like all the regrets curving back on themselves and
digging into
     the skin like ingrown nails     Or  sickles
Slicing through pies cooling on the window sill -- it has that crescent
shape, and
     the shapes rock back and forth, cutting
I like the deep tone cellos make that's almost like a piano

"The esthetician may need to educate the client on the importance of the
I want to write it down
So I dig out my notebook      The lady turns to me and says
"You like my magazine?" in a pointed way     "Yes," I say, "I like this
     out of context it might sound funny"
"Oh," she says, and holds the page open for me    "Did you get it?"
     She asks, as the train pulls into Bedford station     "Yes thank you
I got it," I reply     and she gets off

Note to self: come back in next life as avant-garde Japanese musician

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