by Joanna Gilman Hyde

The Hawk Kitchen 9:37am

I floated down The Hudson River

on a cloud of pink

baby pink

but I had eyes

& could see My Parents

incestuous playmates

together at The Waterfalls

of Snedens Landing

I impregnated My Mother

& She tried to gallop on a horse

to get rid of Me

but since I stayed

She wanted Me

& stuck to Me like horse glue

The first year of human-hood

was spent in Africa

for My Father to teach Africans

how to drive tractors

& for My Mother to give dinner parties to African Dignataries

where Dr Schweitzer held Me

on His Lap

& looked at My Toes

As soon as My Mother & I came home by freighter

Howard was born

& He became My New Shadow

The Hawk Deck 10:37am

Our Mother raised us single-handedly

while Our Father, back from Africa & Divorced

toiled fruitlessly on a dairy farm

Howard & I grew into

robust teenagers

— He a musician

— I an artist

laden down

by My Mother’s Failed Love Affair

with a famous Jazz Player

Fuck This Shit —

I’m not laden down by anything:

Mother’s Old Lost Love

Her Early Death By Malignant Brain Tumour

My Shower of Unintelligible Light

on March 31st, 1993

Brother’s Dying on a Jail-house Floor

or Years of Depression

with My Daughter’s Early Childhood Memories

of Her Mother Lying In Bed

or Hospitalized for Weeks On End

That Daughter has just finished

washing Her Boyfriend’s

Black Dodge Ram 1500

& It’s Drying

in Perfect