Ron Paul Salutsky
Last Night in a Cheap Motel Before Heading to the Caribbean
The clothes continue to spin on the ceiling fan,
having been washed with Castile soap in a Ziploc bag.
My Girl sounds so good on a Wurlitzer backed by congas.
I might have caught Hepatitis-B at the pharmacy
today while getting an immunization for Hepatitis-B.
I’m leaving this town tomorrow
on one of the incessant buses, missing the stop
this time might mean I’m heading
for the South Pole. Has anyone ever dreamed
at the South Pole and if so, did the dream involve
a long-legged man juggling clouds on turtleback
or was it more impressionistic, a mosaic
of shadows contingent on distance
and aperture? Which way is north
from the South Pole, which way isn’t,
what’s the area code? What’s the frequency,
Dan, where have you gone my blue,
wide sun? It’s a garden of icebergs
out the window, and my thoughts of light
behave as wave and particle. My backpack’s
demanding to be stuffed, my trappings
askance on the bed around me.
My underwear circling overhead,
my damp, many-pocketed pants smothering
heat from the TV. My survival knife
trembling. My ambitious condoms
and personal lubricant donated unused
to the bedside drawer. Two 99-cent
rain ponchos enjoying their last
night together, swaying slowly
on the clothesline
to the Wurlitzer’s churn.