With her eyebrow lifted cynically,
She discussed the latest flame-coded threat in terms oblique and contrary.
However, we all know what happens when the only magic she knows
Comes bottled and sold with a child-proof cap,
Unable to be easily peeled and eaten.
I took for granted two things:
That you would always lie for me
And that somewhere tangerines are in season.
But this season,
The magma (blood of the earth),
Wells up where the cuts are.
Healing comes in the form of trees;
Pain in water,
Water which nurtures trees
Ripe with tangerines, which are in season.
The shadowy police crept through the dayshades, while
I held my breath and screamed silent bubbles which grew and grew
Bigger and bigger, swelling like bloated tangerines
Or oranges, if you prefer,
Which are, of course, in season.
She tried to juggle the world in eight different peeled-apart segments.
The people on the fifth segment were sadly destroyed
When she missed the catch.
“However,” she’ll remark animatedly
To anyone who will listen,
“The tangerine trees survived, and that’s good,
’Cause tangerines are in season.”
She wondered once whether blood was acidic;
If, when eating a segment of the world,
The magma (blood of the earth)
Would dribble down her lips, into the cuts she has developed
Since she lost her chapstick
And sting painfully.
In that case, she thought
Canyons would be abrasions cut by pain,
Not yet drawing blood.
The world bites its lip, provoking the cuts it has developed
Since it lost its chapstick.
But somewhere, she contended,
Tangerines are in season.
The lies told to us by the tangerines
Were gray at best;
Insurance fraud was not the least of it
As far as forgery was concerned.
For example, they were apprehensive about the canning business
Until we reminded them that slaughterhouses were an option,
If they preferred.
We take leaps of faith like frogs
Determining in which direction we’ll pursue our folly
Only to land pompously,
Proud of our own idiocy.
“We can learn much,” she lectured
“From the migratory patterns of frogs.
For example, they never turn on red when children are present.
They also do not turn red, even when boiled.
Could there be a deeper meaning to this?”
Only time will tell.
Time will tell, being essentially a chatterbox
Especially when tangerines are in season.
Cotton, which is often grown in a tropical climate (like tangerines),
Muffles noise (unlike tangerines).
She could almost imagine silence emanating in waves
Although it defied the laws of physics.
Homespun cloth, even when raggedy with holes,
Muffles sobs the best, while screams are best muffled
With standard army-issue, pressed uniform.
She remembers the rule
Although she’s yet to earn her merit badge;
When using a Swiss Army Knife
Always points the blade away from her body.
However, tangerines are too convenient to be cut by a knife, however sharp.
It’s better to peel them, especially when they’re in season.
And the juice of the tangerine, like magma
And also like blood,
Stings as it goes down, sweetly sharp like memories of things lost
And people that she once knew;
People who, by now, are apathetic to the plain and simple truth that
In her segment of the magma-bleeding world,
Tangerines are in season.