New Jungle

In the soft plastic corners
of this silent machine
information pours from bus to bus,
trafficked in silicon, channeled
with inaudible purpose, dimensioned,
arrayed, matrixed,
a function of time,

The throb of your
heart, the beat of your
sex, measures of the earth and moon,
days of the sun,
the loping rhythm of your four–legged run,
ritual melodies on wooden drums

listen …

New jungle, new fears.

The pad padding pad pad of gang feet
on the sunbeat, black,
macadam cracked streets like
skin on the back of an earlier beast
from some Africa.

We drive an iron horse.
Whipping machines pounding
steel hooves on the desert.
Crank and squeal, they
sweat hot kerosene.
Racked, biting air,
we leave them to burn
or canker across the sand.
They will kick the dust,
snort, when
they are no more
but ribbed chassis, struts,
corroded framework,


From The Swamps That Close

copyright 2004 Tyler Johnson

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