I think I was still fighting the algae in my mouth when
a man made of silver wagged
his tongue at my skirt.
He bent his metallic-crusted skin at me.
He folded his body down the middle
to an almost collapse and then
slobbered, "Don't you know, kid?
The sun never goes down in New Orleans."
But I have seen this city lay down its sex
atop a great flood,
and I have known the snakes that have slithered
round the legs of the marching surviving.
We walked the brick through the water,
and we walked the bridge like crawfish
jumping the nets.
We lost the light somewhere
after Lake Pontchartrain,
and fizzled out like dead wormholes of craving.
The pelicans will still fly at night.
They care not for shadows and
the killing of smoke that still
grips for vision.
The city will continue in its found dark,
the rain falling as slapping quarters
to embrace the crying sidewalks.
Also by April Michelle Bratten
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