I hear two boys flipping blades open.
The older one tells the small boy open it in one flick,
that switch clicks in rhythm with his wrist.
The whine of a passenger plane
dips down to John Wayne Airport–
It could be a low whistle calling cattle home.
The only sound left is that slight click that’s hit over and over
on the park bench, the sound of my step, the sound
of one more boy learning how to fight.
Today fire burns Palmdale as high desert wind spreads ash,
changing the sky. My lover will tell me later that it’s a misty moon,
that I can’t put that moon in a poem.
I can only put a piñata left on top of a trash pile in these lines,
write in the red paper mache bull split open with frayed edges
flapping in a small hot breath of summer.
I can add flies circling paper plates drawn to the smell of rancid meat.
The party is over. Only boys left behind, a hand on the blade. I think
there must be some way to make the moon more poetic than paper.
Trish Falin is a California poet whose work has appeared in the journals Soundings, Lost Creek Letters, Penumbra, Askew and others. A former news reporter and editor, Trish earned her MFA in Creative Writing Poetry at Antioch University in Los Angeles.