The Trapeze Singer

Please, remember me happily

By the rosebush laughing

With bruises on my chin

The time when we counted every black car passing

Your house beneath the hill and up until

Someone caught us in the kitchen

With maps, a mountain range, a piggy bank

A vision too removed to mention

But please, remember me fondly

I heard from someone you’re still pretty

And then they went on to say that the pearly gates

Had some eloquent graffiti

Like « We’ll meet again » and « Fuck the man »

And « Tell my mother not to worry »

And angels with their gray handshakes

Were always done in such a hurry

And please, remember me at Halloween

Making fools of all the neighbors

Our faces painted white by midnight

We’d forgotten one another

And when the morning came,

I was ashamed

Only now it seems so silly

That season left the world and then returned

But now you’re lit up by the city

So please, remember me mistakenly In the window of the tallest tower call

Then pass us by but much too high

To see the empty road at happy hour

Gleam and resonate just like the gates

Around the holy kingdom

With words like « Lost and found » and « Don’t look down »

And « Someone save temptation »

And please, remember me as in the dream

We had as rug-burned babies

Among the fallen trees and fast asleep

Beside the lions and the ladies

That called you what you like and even might

Give a gift for your behavior

A fleeting chance to see a trapeze

Swinger high as any savior

But please, remember me, my misery

And how it lost me all I wanted

Those dogs that love the rain and chasing trains

The colored birds above their running

In circles ’round the well and where it spells

On the wall behind St. Peter’s

So bright on cinder gray and spray paint « Who the hell can see forever? »

And please, remember me seldomly In the car behind the carnival

My hand between your knees, you turn from me

And said the trapeze act was wonderful

But never meant to last, the clowns that passed

Saw me just come up with anger

When it filled with circus dogs, the parking lot

Had an element of danger

So please, remember me, finally

And all my uphill clawing, my dear

But if I make the pearly gates

Do my best to make a drawing

Of God and Lucifer, a boy and girl

An angel kissing on a sinner

A monkey and a man, a marching band

All around the frightened trapeze swingers

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