Huckleberry Census Bureau Reflux

father & daughter

A rocket scientist who once designed the fuselages of ships that were launched to outer space now sweeps the front sidewalks of village stores during the black mornings when not even the police are watching.

A man who back in the day wailed his way to fame and international fortune twirls the spokes of bicycle wheels upside down and repairs them for nothing, or next to nothing, peddling about on his own, back upright, smile fixed throughout most days.

The hairy, bare-backed lunatic rides in and out of town.

The six hundred pound woman opens her arms and turquoise pieces fall out of her palms.

A depressive takes her little pills over coffee and a twist at 7 in the morning every morning and doesn’t mind the gossip the old geezers are having at the table in the corner where they have gossiped for over twenty-five years before the time they had become geezers.

The merchant from Algeria sells small rugs from his late grandfather’s estate and makes a stream of small profits from the land others are squatting on and taking over in his absence far away beneath his winning smile.

The anti-dote to Dylan plays his lyre and croons still over the death of Bobby in ‘68 when America changed her name, her direction, her being, her place in history and Mankind forever, in dactylic hexameter.

A thin-lipped prep school boy with bowed forehead cannot shake from the mien of his writing heroic couplets he still considers the heart of poetry and is stuck somewhere between Shelley, Hopkins, Hardy, believing somewhere there’s a place called home.

Talismans and trinkets she unlocks her shop’s doors to sell the public her collected wares gathered from tribes and circles and half-known places and groups that somehow still exist in the world yet, and end up on the doorways or draped from the necklines of others elsewhere.

She goes to church and she goes to church too who not so much time ago was fairly mad fairly much on the bar’s sills and fairly beautiful and doesn’t matter then that Christ was despised He makes her better now.

And he’s as coarse as ever fobbing off tarnished silver and lapis in pieces it falls out of for a few dollars or a few dollars more leering and smoking hard as ever.

And he’s as handsome as James Dean who’s sold his body to science that science won’t take his body anymore and so he’s grown thin and old and poor though handsome as old James Dean who’s grown thin and old.

Since early 1970 his repertoire hasn’t grown nor his voice nor his case nor his sidewalk nor his coins some drop in it when playing.

She makes her pictures she hangs them up she deprecates things and makes ironic comments and cracks about leaving the way city folk joke about leaving about Berlin, or New York, or Tallinn.

He drives the truck to where the little red postal flag is turned up and raises his twin girls sings and twinkles past some pieces remembered in the National Museum.

Her kindness shows itself and her temper flares and her unwashed and dirty body smells come out when she appears in one place or another place and heckles those she cares about and is soft or patient around a handful of chosen others.

 

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