Salad in the Back Galley
Below me- constellations with the
names of cities,
immaculate borders of farmland suited
top to bottom with particles: neurons, dust (saw and skin),
inescapable synaptic explosions:
The first time I tried mangos
brought them sliced, orange and steaming
the slippery insides of her zip-lock. I plucked one from the
to smell before I bit into it.
I wondered at varieties, Tommy Atkins and Kent.
Over the twinkling cities I eat a
piece of mango sliced
the same way, long like an apple.
Below a farm boy scratches his head and stares at the
remembering the first time his mother
handed him a lily to smell - the fragrant Stargazer.
Holding his rusted trombone,
my brother explained we were at
the bottom of the earth.
The rest of the world's oceans
were pressing down on our sky
and it sustained slightly
like an invisible, leaky dam.
In the narrow grey of the parking
he smiled and played a children's song
told dirty jokes,
and watched the salty water's
on our small atmosphere,
like the kinked hose
above an overhang in the dirty lot.
Blown particles of thistle surf
some laying down, others twirling upright
like delicate ropes being let go once wound.
White feathers trickled like snowflakes during the orange
We watched airplanes.
The earth bent under our figures,
I turned to her,
face light as if the sun were inside her.
Linney is a writer and learning clinician in the bay area.
Her poetry is generally contemplative but whimsical and based
around the concept of self and of the other. Her previous work
has been published in New Forum, the Undergraduate Creative
Writing Journal at UC Irvine.