Portals

They’re like a new-to-you model of car.  Once you notice one, you start seeing them everywhere.  But nothing has really changed.    

Portals

Wobbly wheel,
the back of two tough heads—
one shaved, one ruffled and square-topped.
Big fellas, late twenties, in a little white
Dodge Neon, looking like cops.
Stuck behind them, I can’t stop
staring at their rugged skulls
and back right wheel, warp in rim
or axle or maybe it’s just loose,
that
wobbly.  The kind of guys
you can’t help but picture fighting,
hand cupping the back of shaved neck
and thinking, Oh, shit—

when a hawk claps past,
right across my windshield’s projection of sky,
suddenly but not quickly following that exact line–
brown and wide, single flap and glide,
white wing-tips carrying light–
then blinking out behind my car roof
and the building roofs,
a sort of moving portal that closes;
traffic merging ahead.
I’m in the far lane from the merge
so all is well; I’m waiting
but don’t need to work,

and as always when I’m stuck or still,
the world is stepping forwards
with what’s wrong and right.
In other words, my judgment fixes
on whatever crosses its sights,
organizing rules and exceptions—
until it sees its eye in the scope lens
point blank reflected,
and growls recognition, sniffs,
bares teeth and snaps, tastes—
then swallows itself like Anubis the snake,

except not from the tail but the lips,
shrinking backwards with face
disappearing first until
mouth and asshole clap together,
a hole in the air, portal that drifts
while cinching tighter until
finally all the way closed
like a dimmed pixel reignited
as the light changes,
traffic limps and shakes.

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