It was spring in the Ice Age
and Mary was the mother
of Bob, who out of a primeval forest
rose to sculpt glass sculptures,
blow hot air into glass bubbles,
and brag about the daylight,
about all the fabulous ass he got,
which is what Bob loved most of all
when he gave birth to arson
and grand larceny.
Mary lived to sell his tail,
forgive his crimes,
and sing from mountain to mountain
the songs we all remember
from the young summer we loved the most.
And I was born of iron in the Bronze Age,
a slow train before there were tracks
to roll upon toward the coast,
a cold drink before there were throats
that were dry from desert thirst,
a wound before men and women
learned how to heal.
This is my foot upon the gas
pedal of an automobile,
surrounded on the road
by Jacks, Jennys and Johns.
Their headlights are on
but mine are not, or mine are on
and theirs are off on tangents, aimed
at the wind, the trees, the flying insects
in the aging, wrinkling breeze.
I am a man. I am a woman.
I am a shining silver ghost,
missing all the buttons on my
old gray dusty winter coat
but I am going places.
Photograph by Jose Padua