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  • Mary Ellen Swee

Adam West

I saw the face of God today

in a sea-blue room

with dogwood flowers

overhead, and Fiji,

in triptych, on the wall.

Adam West was there

but not in costume,

where sirens sing

a vein is dead.

Can’t get the needle in.

Wriggle with the needle,

slippery worm. Hunting

for an open window, door,

anywhere to jab,

but they protest –

like it’s my fault –

while comparing dues.

Son of Laertes was there,

strapped to his post, and

sailors wearing masks

with slits for eyes.

My nemesis, too,

drowning in the middle

of the blue sea room,

goddess executing justice

with a sharp magnetic knife.

She made them belt me in,

send me down the Nile,

up the slope of Sinai,

up Olympus, Fiji,

diving under skin.

Tiresias was there,

with discs for eyes,

between blindness and sight,

listening to the song of birds.

Sailors, lay me on a pyre

of hot blankets,

wrapped in flames

only robins can see.

How to make the lids

stop twitching

with sixteen muscles

jumping up to run away?

I close my eyes

but healing sounds cannot

put out the hammer pounding.

Then he enters, shining white,

with dogwood flowers overhead.

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