Recalling the Black and White Ball
By William Doreski
A cloud alone in a plain sky.
As I sit on a pickupís tailgate
that cloud descends and presses
its vapors to my heart. Swooning
in pastels, I surrender
to this sudden lack of vision
and learn itís another version
of you in that infamous dress
you wore to the Black and White Ball—
an event I thought was racist,
especially when I sensed the crowd
galvanizing against my scruples.
That was years ago, but here
in Depot Square as I savor
a bit of coffee cake you crowd me
with your eruptive body
and your abstract state of mind.
In a place without description,
a fog that Iíve internalized,
the hills roil like boiling potatoes
and the rivers steam with injustice.
No one escapes this landscape
because no one inhabits it
who could safely live elsewhere.
Youíre as material as I am,
yet the ghost of that slim black dress
overlays you like the apparel
of a paper doll. We recovered
from that boldly offensive evening
when our friends sprouted antlers
and our enemies dropped to all fours.
Now Iíve swallowed all the vapors
and the blue returns, exposing
the absence where you sat while
I reincarnated myself
in a form fit for public display.
Copyright © 2021 by William Doreski.