Thursday, May 12, 2022

Purple Martin

In a land long obsessed
With small variations
In surface skin colors,

Martin was a new one—
Orphan in a basket
With a note of his name

Left by the highway side,
Brought in by state troopers,
Skin such pale lavender,

The hospital sent him
Straight into ICU.
Later, they regretted

Not getting genetics
Sampled and decoded
From him, but at the time

They were relieved enough
He was healthy and found
Foster parents quickly.

By the time he was ten
He’d been in a few homes.
An evangelical

Family with a dozen
Mostly adopted kids
Already took him in

And adopted him then.
They liked to joke his shade
Completed their palette.

They were awkward like that.
When adolescence hit
Martin at twelve, he changed

From a bright twiggy boy
With a slightly odd tinge
To a tall, purple youth,

With stubble on his chin
And swagger in his walk
And then trouble found him.

Summary: he flunked out,
Got drunk, got back in twice,
Dropped out again, spent time

In a holding cell, but
Never hard time, crashed bikes,
One car, married, married,

Married again, divorced,
Was widowed, had some kids
Not his own, lost his own,

Found one, but not purple
Like him, no one like him,
Let’s see, kidney disease,

Diabetes, back pains,
Some travel, some girlfriends,
Some jobs, no real career,

People always asking
Him about his strange skin,
Who did he belong to,

What named group was he in?
Was his skin dark for them?
Was his skin weirdly bright?

What was it with his skin?
He did some art, went broke,
Did some more, had trouble

More and more with his heart,
Then a coma, and then
Cremated, with his skin.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.