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In This Economy

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The economical ikebana
of the lesser octopus
is disarming,
 
a sextopus, holding
its intelligence
& ink
 
in a concentrate.
Not some sloppy octopus
who suddenly
 
freaks, so princessy, rich.
Driven to abstraction
not unlike flowers
 
dropping their petals
because petals are garbage
off the bloom,
 
not expensive anymore
thus going inside
to find meaning.
 
Cut the eyes, then, from
the cruel ikebana
of the racehorse—
 
if a leg breaks she can't
bear her own
weight,
 
long-blossomed head
turns to glue
and the fortune
 
zooms off like flies
from a carcass
when shooed.
 
The tripod fell
so I had to cast about
for my crutch
 
to walk over—my bad
left knee buckling—
to right it.
 
I want to take a picture
of the flowers
I arranged
 
after an ikebana class,
just one. I quit
quickly
 
but still hope to learn
to arrange beauty
classically.
 
Maybe I'm lazy, or
don't apply the rules
to myself,
 
or maybe "laze" is just
"zeal" rearranged,
as in my case.
 
Even now, the clock
we need to punch
out on is too far
 
away to plug in,
so power collects
in its hands. 

Brenda Shaughnessy, "In This Economy" from So Much Synth. Copyright © 2016 by Brenda Shaughnessy.  Reprinted by permission of Copper Canyon Press, www.coppercanyonpress.org.
Source: So Much Synth (Copper Canyon Press, 2016)
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In This Economy

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