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The Surrealist Visits Reno


ISSUE:  Autumn 1982

Here is an opal and the pure gray sky
it grows below, an anthem lick of love,
a skull with molten nostrils, orange eyeholes,
indigo whenever push comes to shove.
Here a winner lies buried, golden glove
atop the moonstones that were his jackpots:
hustles of plums, berries, a triple grove
of oranges. Strike three and ring the slots.

Roan horses show sunfish bedlam; the sly
cherries spill willy-nilly, their red move
falling to stop on a slow strawberry.

The spinners flick quietly, their slow rove
at electric odds with a treasure trove
of heaven versus snow, life and its plots
whirling at random. Wear a purple glove
to charm grapes into winy silhouettes.

On this machine, fortunes have scuttled by.
Mysteries have mushroomed for time to solve.
Carry dimes in a Dixie Cup and sigh
as they soak into an apple-scented cove—
silver pomanders fragrant with brown clove—
like stems. Every gambler knows money floats.
Every gambler will bet his stake to prove
luck is a rhinestone darling you can coax.

Neon pours gin and an olive. Blue pouts
of a stripper settle into the groove
of a golden tremor paid for by touts.
Money is luck and all we need for love.

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