for Reggie Burwell

  There’s been
 a lot of talk,
lately, as to whether
or not America
actually went
to the moon.
The nonbelievers
say there’s no
weather in space
—no humidity, no wind, no rain,
only empty pockets
and crank shapes.
Craters, big-ass
asteroids, black holes.
They say waving
our arms, all at once,
is as false as the flag
and We, the people, percussively agree:
looks jive-phony, unless,
of course, you think of the moon
as a snare drum
—half, eclipsed, full,
and consider, as Polo did,
the percussive
nature of gravity,
the forcible way the Earth,
like a party, pulls
a body, every body
back to it every time
some symbol crashes
or the rototoms,
like satellites,
get too-hype and someone
jumps up, as Polo did,
beyond the
regular “lock” of
solar system
like a short, well-barbered
meteor, hurled
into the divine orbit
of coma ... beyond the limitations
of all things earthly,
including the notion
of nation, and its local,
ingrown extension: going National.
The whole time
Polo was in the air,
he was in total control
of his own ounce
of lunar sleep,
replacing the handcuffs
around Saturn
with open hi-hats.
The whole time
he was on
life support,
removing vowels.


HOME PAGE IMAGE: Jackson, Wyoming (For Rainer) (2016) by Barry Underwood, FROM ISSUE NO. 226, FALL 2018.