They told me to take a street-car named Desire, and transfer to one called Cemeteries, and ride six blocks and get off at—Elysian Fields! (Blanche Debois in Tennessee Williams’ drama.)
Desire named in
real conversation but
stories inflate, shock and
tempt. (Her husband’s man-love
and suicide deemed too strong
for the Commission; and her boy love?
“Why he’s just seventeen!”)
Derailed in the Land of the Dead.
Blanche’s Greek drama caught in
magnolia blossom, flimsy scarf,
near black and white. Her
place-less plantation fallen to
debauchery. Once sheltered, then
shown and shut in. Condemned.
Brando brute unmasks both raw
and hungry. His apartment, well
off the French Quarter, pokes
bets and constant craving. Lusting
after life and trading
on decency. Southern chivalry
escorts Our Lady to Castles in the
Air where her blue veined wrists,
gently powdered, reveal deep tracks.
Outside Tailgate where the player plays,
Cajun crawdads boil toy lobsters and
gluttony under the yellow moon. Green,
beige, and deep maroon steam
red on Fat Tuesday’s feast.
Marti Gras and carnival call,
“It’s okay by me, if it’s okay bayou!”