Thursday, December 24, 2009

Leonardo Alishan: Christmas Eve, 1988

Angels sleep on a stack of gambling debts
gathering dust and interest.
The ivy loses five leaves every day.
I helplessly count
the last sleeping pills
on my unfamiliar fingers.
The Christmas tree is a village maid
all made up for her wedding night.
The fireplace is a big, black yawn.
Yellow leaves should not be left
among the green.
(Why does Granny's ghost
sleep under my son's bed?) . . .
The big win, the sure bet
never was and never came.
I kissed the bottle goodbye
but the apricots never kissed me back.
A cigarette butt burns my nostrils
but I am too tired
to put it out.
My guardian angels sleep
with their broken wings
on my soft stack of gambling debts.
In the mirror I see
God's corpse burning in the acid seas.
The tired ivy hangs her bare arms languidly.
(I'm too tired to bend,
raise the blankets from my son's bed,
and play peek-a-boo
with Granny's ugly ghost.) . . .
It [is] . . . frustrating
. . . counting sleeping pills
and having extra fingers left.
In the end, the old fireplace
will have the ultimate pleasure
of belching smoke
after making a meal of the Christmas tree.
(Merry Christmas Granny and good night.)

No comments: