Thursday, April 18, 2013

Patrick Fontes: Five Poems

Five poems by Patrick Fontes.

Soothing Pho

I tell her pho is warm in the winter
like soothing hugs but on the inside
she rolled her eyes twice for effect
stopped smacking her gum long enough to blow
a bubble “eww isn’t it all dirty an shit?”
looked at her fish lipped face in the mirror
we ate dinner at tgifridays frozen food served hot
by a Minnie Mouse perky waitress twitching
with excitement in maniacal fashion to serve
left over ribs smothered in canned sauce
and blue margaritas watered down with ice
I feel all tipsy she said I thought good baby
all I want to do is eat you lets head back
when we came it felt like pho all soothing inside
the number six bowl with all kinds of weird meat
next day I ate pho watching sexy Vietnamese
women slurp broth sucking on noodles and tripe

A Dust Blower’s Dream

Within a dust storm Antonio daydreams
of his family in Jalisco’s Los Altos longing
for his safe return as father lover brother
as morning exhaust fumes speed past in mad rush
cars bearing distant faces eyes mesmerized
on straight lines as far as the muddied horizon
beckons them into the blurred brown sky
hovers filtering the sun staining each ray
soiled orange falling onto oily streets
past Antonio as he works among his
earth bound cloud swirling around daytime visions
millions of magic particles he is lost in memories
of past present future melted together over
and over like rich mole thick with sadness
and hope gush out of the blower’s mouth
he imagines Quetzalcoatl writhed about his body
the engine’s vibration’s a god’s beating heart
with gaping jaws spews mighty winds of blessings
a mighty tornado of benevolent chaos
breathing life into littered candy bar wrappers
changed into dirtied plastic birds flying through the air
a cigarette box tossed out a window
last Friday night receives a soul dances alive
gyrates like Jennifer Lopez then shoots away
with choreographed flocks of leaves arisen in unison
fall dead again in a neighboring gutter
“asshole!” a business man in a black BMW
yells as he drives through Antonio’s dreamscape
cloud blowing down a Fresno street
inside the storm’s eye Antonio’s thoughts
a torrent whorling dust laced divinations

Golden Year Memories Alone

Golden year memories vinyl repeating
in Billy’s mind skipping on scratched regrets
sitting on stained floral motel blankets
opens a Gideon bible new spine cracked
he smells the fresh inked pages with tears
takes another swig of Jim rubs his furrowed brow
for the thousandth time yearns for touch
from yesteryears’ faces long since muffled
his name widespread back then in rock star status
but the years have a way of diluting fandom
tattered photos fade locked away in drawers
love worn hearts mend into forgetfulness
friends like brothers turned into old men
worrying about mortgages, cancer
and back payment child support
no one answers his drunken dialed pleas
all the back slapping, hugs and kisses
meaningless now alone in a motel room
drinking another fifth of whiskey lonely
thinking about glory days past into shadows
lurking in his mind whispering lies of vanity

Saturday Morning Silver Back

Saturday morning scent-soaked clothes
coffee bean odors dance with pheromones
shirt unbuttoned twice down purposeful
slightly wrinkled says “I don’t give a damn”
nonchalantly spying pretty faces queued
skimming sports pages feigned interest
in some record breaking jock back east
I sit cross-legged pretending to read
saturated with pungent roasted smoky musk
sweating off an African silver back – me!
ready to jump up pound my chest
bare teeth and screech right here in the café
ripping off clothes mounting from behind in line
splashing café lattes & triple venti caps
into the air like a jungle monsoon season
wet sticky sweet caramel and cream
dripping from corporate walls as you ape scream
so this man can daydream…
all the while peeking over a newspaper page
gazing slyly disguising weekend lust
lock onto sultry eyes carrying a book as you walk in

Poppy Blossoms

I wanted to write
about poppy blossoms
painting California hills
brilliant orange in spring
then I looked out my window
on Fresno’s grey streets
blending with apocalyptic skies
above the heroine addicts
scratching scabs
at the bus stop

in grief turning my mind
imagined sierra lakes pristine
quartz like floating glass temples
nature’s divine holy water
back draining down crystal streams
stinging scorched valley dirt
then on the corner twitching
grinding teeth monstrous
a meth addict wide-eyed
wiped a flowing nose

depressed I hiked urban decay
through littered alleys zigzag
guttered creeks
reeking of shit steaming
reminded me of majestic deer
panting frost aside Yosemite’s falls
noble hoary eagles soaring screech
talons digging into writhing prey
past black bears mawling a hiker
then I opened my eyes
on Fresno’s welfare caste
eating shitting fighting

I wanted to write about
poppy blossoms…

Patrick Fontes: Currently I am a PhD candidate in history at Stanford University. My research involves border issues, Mexican religion, the Virgin Mary, immigration into the Southwest, and the criminalization of Chicano culture. I grew up in Fresno, in a working class Chicano home, surrounded by gritty streets, gangs, rock n roll, and ethnic diversity. Many of these themes come out in my poetry. The smells, voices, sounds, hopes and ghosts of familia who have gone before me also saturate my poems.

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