Olive View Neuropsychiatric, LA County, 2004
For Deborah R.
Deborah R. had a purple heart.
It was not without slim perforations
It was not notarized
Then filed, by some outsourced agency, based in D.C.
The mauve-ish mitral valves were shrouded
In the penny-loafer mores of Yankee-suburbia.
She looked intact-like the sterile business of bar graphs
Or the simple chemistry, of acrylic powder
As it converges with those chintzy water bowls,
At the local $30 mani-pedi.
(When Deborah kicked the Vicodin, she became agoraphobic.
Her seventy-or-so-mother got her to the grocery store
Sometimes it was easy--
And sometimes milk was spilt, unbraiding
Like a mutant naval brigade--then splintering off
into slender renegade lakes--
(A sad exhibition of lucency in a liquid vein-mop).
After the seventy-two hours elapsed,
I never saw Deborah again.
But on nights such as this (where
Lurid constellations convene and then diverge again
An astral spasm of insurgent configurations...
I wonder if I will be remembered for my feats
And forgotten as I am,
Starboard from one, to the next confine.