Incognito

When I return, part of me too wants to fly
under the radar and never be found— wants
the anonymity of walking in streets

where faces give back neither my stare
nor my smile. I want to have breakfast
that will be of no consequence

to the weather but not vice-versa, to pull back
the dragonfruit’s crimson scales and find
a constellation of black dots

decorating a white sky, each one
identical and not identical to the others.
In my other life, I did as I was told:

put on the right shoe before the left,
waited until the telephone finished
speaking; pulled on the cord

that filled the emergency mattress with air.
Can I sit in the shade with the women
who peddle bottles of amber liquid

and packets of green betel leaf chew?
Their faces are old and lined but they know
what tinctures to drink for oblivion

from too much or too little love,
from too much crying; and they know when,
if needed, how to give you the finger.

 

In response to Via Negativa: Repeated dreams.

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