~ a sestina
Jayne says she’s moving to Panama,
where I imagine Gaugain and his wild birds,
opulent women with black hair and sepia breasts,
knowing my country is wrong
but having the vision
nonetheless - perhaps some temperamental
need is expressed, or is it the temperature
that’s unequivical? Jayne will leave for Panama
in a few years, she envisions.
Meanwhile her partner takes the big bird
flight to that country or a slow boat, I could be wrong.
Upon her return, I might learn if the breasts
of Gaugain’s women are like the breasts
of the Panamanians, does temperature
affect these things or is my picture wrongly
skewed and does it matter? Why Panama?
Because Jayne is sick at heart like a bird
out of sync with its flight pattern, its vision
dependent upon the vision
of its leader, but the wind against its breast
like an outstretched hand, cups our bird
in a turrent of false moves where temperature,
and faulty navigation, not like the Panama
scheme, captures the thing in a net of wrong
sights, fake landmarks, nothing is right, everything wrong.
So Jayne, who is five years my elder, has a vision.
She sees escape from inevitable sadness in Panama,
with or without the famous breasts.
She will go to this home of expats - placid, temperate
Panama, where all feathers, all birds
are welcomed or so she says and no bird
is ruffled by armed men, by sad, wrong
rationales of hate, where temperatures
all year are mellow, a moderate vision,
a sane world. She prepares for Panama,
birsong echoes fill her breasts.