CSULA Department of English | Statement 2005

trans land

by
Jeffrey Neale

 

trans land

(ginnedambienedheartbroken) “…would you change anything?” - United
First-class Spanish lady with shellacked skunk-hair sits next to
me musters the nerve to speak to me –
rouge-smacking-whisper-at-first-inaudible-lips-exercising - my
headphones churning beats obliterating hyperficially why I am on
this plane - I decipher her question or make it my own (stale roll
Land-o-Lakes pat of hydrogenated oil - stewed crippled bird no
face no limbs - sorbic acid beanlike mush pyrosulphurous acid
serving grief on diminutive square china - lemonesque towelette
wipe the conscience - crystalline sodium chloride play “Regret:
The Sequel”)  I will
never run a marathon stumble down icy 26th Street in a
t-shirt howl about running off a job I desperately need to pay the
rent - I will never climb Mount Everest without supplemental
oxygen be a dazzling young artist with a promising career matching
girlfriend savvy dealer smart palette - I will never study biology
chemistry biochemistry physics astrophysics - I will never engage
in the communal exchange of anonymous fluids - I will never
understand metaphysics (homemade telescope cardboard tube bottle
caps shards of glass gaze at the galaxy enumerate the stars –
little flesh suitcase with busted clasp filled with National
Geographics Smarties bald doll mothballs skull-and-bones vessel
marked poison - Mother’s pantyhose) 
I will never microscope my father’s skin run my hand down
his face smell garlic on his breath (asbestos dust splintered
folding wooden staircase closet stacked with cloroxed towels –
all the women crying) I will never binge on crystal with three
friends listen to spacey new age music dance on pianos rub white
powder on my gums until one of us drops - I will never count
pennies take change to the bank buy a book on fashion send away
for a two-carat Diamonique ring that costs thirty-four dollars
ninety-five cents - I will never be that frog (dismantled
rollerskates) I will never die for animal rights be vegan faint at
the inhumane treatment of laboratory rabbits – I will never
touch the North Pole - I will never be a palm tree a stick of
chewing gum a weapon an oracle a solution – I will never be a
ten-year old boy sitting on the steps of St. Vincent’s waiting
for Uncle Bernie to die - I will never eat lead torture beetles
lie to myself about visions of the future (wide river wide
airplane wide shoreline bluish Ford Amazon-green of native eyes
wounded fruit - imaginary opera dusty fingernails dehydrated)
Spanish lady sleeps dreams of church-bells smells of Tahitian
vanilla – cotton-candy clouds beyond the plexiglass (decathexis)
a flourish of acceptance (like meringue - a real reason) I am on
this jumbo jet to say goodbye (unscripted hope evaporates like
ether) I will never be a reflection a shimmer (a fragment of you)
I will never combust (bloodlock)