Why do you feel qualified? Mr. Blue Blazer asked.
And I looked out the skyscraper window.
Far below, a man struggled with a shopping cart,
One wheel stuck, his cargo of tin and glass jingling.
Sir, answer us, Mr. Suede-patches-at-the-elbow asked.
I stood up and peeked further down,
Pigeons flattened in the gutter,
Their feathers fossils for my own flight.
It says here you’re an artist, Ms. Perfume inquired.
I gazed at my belt, lynch for the last day of the month.
I considered my fingernails,
Claws that hugged a tree for the love of its roots,
And swallowed my spit, a poor-man’s breakfast.
The chairs squeaked,
The fish in the lighted salt tank circled,
A fish that I had been eyeing
Since I stepped into office.
I’m qualified because…I started.
Mr. Patches leaned forward, head like a chunk of cheese.
Ms. Perfume jangled her bracelets.
Mr. Blazer swabbed his front teeth with a sour tongue.
…because I could eat that fist in that tank there
With a butter sauce, I finished.
Out on the street with my portfolio of wrong answers,
I turned in a circle and thought, What next?
Hurrying away, nearly running from the gravity
Of a San Francisco hill,
I was every dark penny that rolled away,
But still hoperful of running into the glittery crowd
Of nickels and dimes.