Eleanor Lerman


BOATS IN THE SNOW


Two days before Christmas, I am the woman on the eastbound
platform in the long black coat.  The trains steam as if London
were the backdrop instead of the last city stop on the Independent
line.  I have gone this way as far as I can go, which is, of course, 
the distance to the holiday.  Which is, of course, the risk that comes
with travel: the stations are on fire.  There is no rest, no food.  The
body understands that it is money and the money, darlings, is always 
spent.  I have gone this way as far as I can go, which is the way 
that you must find me.  You with your small hands and bright smile

Two days before Christmas, and I have been thinking about the risk
of taking second chances.  This may get harder as I get older, and I
donít know if I remember all the human elements (help with the 
dishes, offer to run errands, compliment the cooking and the clothes)
I donít know if I remember what to exchange for sex: not love or
painóyouíve thought through those before.  Not houses you can enter
with a womanís keys.  Not dreams, not healing, not the eternal medicine 
of time.  What can I give you that you donít have?  The stations were
on fire, but I came anyway.  In my fortune, you were the child in the
spring.  Are these the things that otherwise, you would never know?

Two days before Christmas, and I am feeling the cold.  You will have
cleared the eaves and hung the lights before I even set myself to walking
the right road.  You with your small hands and bright heart: let me tell you
how I will travel as I get older.  By your house, in a locked yard, there are
boats in storage for the winter.  In the early days of April, people will
feel the rising wind.  They will undo the locks and haul the boats out to 
Head of the Harbor, where there is good fishing, good waves. So you, 
with your eternal kindness, thatís where I am going. You, who were 
promised in the springtime.  You, who are speaking of blue water and 
silver starfish when you tell me that next door, there are boats in the snow  



FASCISM: A COMPLETE HISTORY


The suggestion comes at midnight, naturally, but thatís good
because youíre in the mood.  And since one vampire seems
just like any other these days, why not go running through
the streets?  Why not bite down hard on the weak white flesh
of the wicked, especially if you get to choose who the wicked
really are?  But I am warning you

One cup.  One spoon.  One blanket.  One skin bag of pale
gruel: this is how they will equip you for the coming war
Ohóyou didnít know?  They didnít tell you?  At the thin
girlsí party, at the sex club, the big premiereóno one had
received their final notice yet?  No one heard the battering
	rams slamming down the door?

Well, they are.  So donít be fooled if outside, the black horses
hitch themselves to the great chariot of time and pull slowly
as Ovid has instructed; itís likely heíll be deconstructed next
(Popped into the chopper.  Drawn and quartered. Brained)
So watch:  how the moon melts.  How chill green ice splinters
at the seashore.  How children who will think the unthinkable 
are already waiting to be born


SUICIDE BUNGALOW


Thin as a wire, behind Jackie O shades, you are photographed
in Peacock Alley, clutching your cigarettes like Bianca Jagger.
Like a socialite humanitarian.  Like a woman with nothing to do
Or you are at the Chateau Marmont in a suicide bungalow, 
thinking about cocaine. Which nobody does anymore, because

itís much too simple. A drug for white girls with chilly souls
Unhappy, unmarried, sleeping with queers who want your
jewelry: what can we do for you, today, in this globalizing
world?  The markets are open and we still have money: do
you want radium?  Pharmaceuticals?  Slaves to beat your
rugs? You think that no one loves you, but we do, darling,

we still want to see you in the glossies, we want a feature in
Hello! Our princess is gone and there is no one to admire as we
eat our flesh pies and rattle our rusty cages. So tell us everything: 
we want to know what it was like to be eighteen and blonde, to 
be in India with Paul and Ringo, to be at Altamont when something 
changed.  To be a mod, a rocker, to be whisked off in a helicopter 

with the latest band. Your stories keep us going because we canít 
remember anything: from one day to the next we have to learn 
again how to pound each nail. So drink up!  Eat something rich
and take your medicineódonít worry, we will never let you die
Youíre still our girl, our sacrifice, our chosen weapon. The only 
evidence we have about what happened before all this went down