Junipero Serra

Along the marijuana
scented streets of San Francisco State University,
evening classes, students clump along Holloway Avenue,
smokers come out from behind parking meters that stand as centurions.

Houses glitter along the hills
and catch the sun’s last rays
before clocks fall back,
shroud the coast in early night.

Already fog and mist, landscapes
turned from flowers
to succulents in the California drought,
walk the rickety plank

of long ago
when I held your ashes,
and emptied what was left of you
into the San Francisco Bay,

did not allow your grit
to touch my fingers,
a couple
of thieves who stole

what we could from each other—
a lick of salt,
a touch of black
brocade, red embroidery.

An arranged marriage
by some fly-by-night
agency handed us coupons
and winked when we left,

harbor seals
on a deck of cards
handing out
sweet bitterness

in the night air,
all the things
we meant to be
and weren’t,

walked past 19th Avenue to my Camry
parked on Junipero Serra Blvd.
Cars rocket toward Highway 280
along a cypress-lined street

named for the Franciscan friar who founded
the mission-system in California herding
native populations with whips and soldiers.
The many shapes of named sainthood.

Links to My Work

Two Places: Cross the Bay Bridge to Oakland, California and walk the bayous of Louisiana
Price(USD): $15.00

About Lenore Weiss

Lenore's collections include "Tap Dancing on the Silverado Trail" (2011) from Finishing Line Press, “Sh’ma Yis’rael” (2007) from Pudding House Publications, and "Cutting Down the Last Tree on Easter Island" (West End Press, 2012). Her writing has won recognition from Poets&Writers (finalist in California Voices contest) and as a finalist for Pablo Neruda Prize, Nimrod International Journal. The Society for Technical Communication has recognized her work regarding Technical Literacy in the schools. All material is copyrighted on this site and cannot be used without the author's permission.
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