Two boys, pink in their manhood, lean over a balcony, full
of teeth. Below: a brown man, skin tired of holding his bones.
Work falls in shadows around his feet.
The Puget Sound is bluer than any dream or sky. The boys loom, pink.
Is it rain? A sudden shower on this otherwise idyllic afternoon, this day
which looks painted, happy little trees? The man crosses his arms. He looks up,
I look up. We crane our necks, we keep our eyes on the sky.
Sky, where heaven unpeels in a sluice of excess water,
where storm ferments and sizzles down. Again, a white drop.
Then laughter, the pink mouth moving in an o and then a half circle, tooth-full. No heaven
but a white boy’s mouth. No storm but the giggles bubbling up into a ball of frothy spit,
the hanging loop that lingers before it drops, so close to that brown head, then the flat
splat on the cement below. The boys slink away, pleased with their game.
The man still looks up—maybe to heaven, maybe just to the clouds.