Walking Around

It so happens I'm tired
of walking around.

I'm tired of walking in zig-zags
and curliques
and figure-eights
and circles even
to avoid the plants.

They are after my clothes again;
each plant, I don't care what its Mexican name is,
has spines designed specifically
to attack my gringo clothes.

It is like warfare.
It is a cultural situation:
they don't want me here.

Plants have jaws.
They yell at you.
Get out.

You walk around them gingerly
so as not to disturb them,
to rouse their ire.

It so happens I'm tired of this ire,
of getting yelled at each time I
poke my body into something.

I'm sorry.
Fuck off.

They attach themselves to my pants.
With long langourous strokes
they mournfully tear the shirt off my back.

They want me naked.

And there is a place in a dried up creek bed
where the willow branches have long
golden threads
that stroke you as you pass.
by Norbert Ruebsaat