93: coma, canto 34

canto 34

and Lucy was provided for,
coming in with a bible,
a study bible,
another bible,
colored red,
a Jerusalem version,
and lessons on the real
creator of the universe
in pamphlets,
given her,
she said,
by my father.

with a smile?
I asked,
and she smiled.

she sat at the couch
and put these things
on the coffee table
which is not poetic,
more poetic was that
borrowing of my
recently bought
computer, which was like
a piece of notebook
paper, and, seated at the couch,
she leafed through the creation
pamphlet, then poked
at my new computer,
like a piece of thick paper.
I watched her tap
and turn, turn pages, read,
then go to tapping
and reading from the screen,
watched her from my station,
where my monitor
wrote poetry about money
and more more money
and slippage here
and slippage there,
and spoke poetry
of the economies of things,
of value,
and I watched her then go
to the red bible,
which she read,
then tapped again at my
new computer,
so much like a piece of paper,
or, perhaps, more poetic with prosody,
like a slim stack of pieces
of paper,

and this became annoying
so I asked her, I asked Lucy,
What are you doing?

she showed me lists
on the microblogging app,
inside which another app
told her where soandso
had just arrived
and more soandsos
arrived, places I knew,
cafes, schools, businesses
local, close, far,
the app declaring
where this and that person
was, informing Lucy
who was where and where
soandso was in real time
and she said: So I tell Ned,
I tell James, I tell Jimmy
and then they know
where soandso isn’t,
do you know what I mean?

I said: You can’t be serious,
that Ned, James, Jimmy,
who I know live underground,
know where soandso isn’t
because you tell them,
and this is how you manage
your affairs, and Henry,
does Henry know.

I swear I can be serious,
Lucy said, with her smile,
and her butter hands
tapping, and then she said:
I would love one of these.

the screen said that @. . .
had just arrived at a local cafe.
And now what? I said.
What do you do?
Now I text Ned, because I know
who that person is and Ned,
Ned who’s tall, Ned who has good hands
can visit where @. . . isn’t and borrow,
borrow this, borrow that,
knowing that @. . . is elsewhere,
she said, using the word
elsewhere exactly as conspired
by the makers of languages.

I rose (did I shake my head?
Did I dare inform Thor?
Did I dare call some authority?)
Instead, I answered the phone,
ringing like some interposing
glassbreak, something stunning,
to Imelda, I watching Lucy
convey with her phone
with language her news
to James or Ned or Jimmy.

and Imelda said:
I can’t see you tonight.
I said: Why not see me tonight?
Because, she said, I’m going to Mexico.
Mexico, I said.
Yes, Mexico, she said,
because I don’t have my papers.
I never got my papers.
Don’t worry, she said,
it’s the second time, she said.
I said: what, what, what.
But, she said, I just wanted to say
I love you, but they found me,
they found me, but I do
indeed, in both Spanish and English,
love you.

all while in the background
the papers turned,
the butterfinger tapped,
and the butterfingers texted.

and I said
to empty air.

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