|Image (c) - Mgcini Nyoni|
for Aundretta Conner Farris
Our mangoes are rich here
but in Istanbul,
time can fold in on itself like memories
tying knots with blood vessels,
one can appear as if in a dream today
and be gone tomorrow.
The dried apricots you eat
paint your hands a sapphic yellow
like a savanna locked in mid-step with a prairie
to look is to fall in love
like Gauguin out of Paris, sauntering
or Coltrane and Naima for something smooth.
I follow your native gaze to Antalya
as a penny for your thoughts (living off the measure)
in order to pilfer a story
in which you give far more than you receive
Denny, skulk off to the ramparts with me at midnight
and we will bribe a fisherman besides,
Bulawayo is fine this time of year
sometimes, it rains on a perfectly sunny day
and the old folks say that it is a monkey's wedding.
The streetwise local boy slash erstwhile pocket thief
you save from a sure beating by the vegetable
stands will call you Amai, meaning you are still
the end and beginning of all things
and he will repay you in overripe mangoes.