Call and Response

with so much light            shadows are bright
the color of sound             roots in neutral ground
white goods                      or the mist of wolves
mourners dance                  in a voodoo trance
the end of truth                  the death of youth
wealthy preachers                  modest teachers
streetcar named desire           flood and fire
a gulf storm                            wet and warm
a green wine                       followed by a black vine
like swaying palms              the dripping calm
like the blues                        flesh of the bruise
like the rain                       crisscrossed the train
who’s got trouble            all the trouble
over the river                     the deep river
canopies drying                   horses flying
cannabis smoke                  like incense and hope
love and peace                  lies and police
musty rooms                   floating tombs
a lizard call                  wakes a shadow doll

New Orleans or Nawlins or The City that Care Forgot or The City of Nature

Thus Hurricane Katrina blotted out every living thing
But the fountains of the deep closed
And the people remembered Nola.
They remembered their flowers of desire,
Live oaks branching across dreams,
The natural magic of walking banana trees,
Dancing lizards and voodoo honey.

People remembered and one by one
The sweet devilwood of their mornings
Returned in the beak of a dove.
There’s no way to stay sober
Where streets have the names of Muses.
There’s no way to stay dry
In so green and destructive an Eden.