92. about a prune

what we had (that one time when),

the question of alexander’s and —

where’d it go? where’d it been?

what’s it to do with anything?

alexander’s and was kidnapped,

standing at some bus stop

(conjunctions are vulnerable

to advances of strange people)

stuffed into the smelly boot,

by two ugly, smiling roots —

one was grey with long white scars,

the other one, a tiger shark

an and alone is lost without

the conjunts that it surround —

alexander was, even worse,

left without a linking word

alexander had, awkwardly,

had the and, well, hanging there

(alexander’s a manta ray —

his and, a remora, say)

the and was forced into service,

linking things like sharks and eels,

a fate so sour you wouldn’t wish

it to fall on any fish

it’s a hard, an awful grind,

and-ing for the powerful —

alexander’s and — scarred from it

(then he ands a carp and perch)

alexander was unable to

scrape (or steal) the ransom fee,

so he made a simple plan

to spring his slaving sucker friend

he would give an either/or

to the sharks who hoard the words —

it’s a beggar’s basement bargain,

two words for the price of one

and, if we really should be honest,

it is what they always wanted —

distracted by the outsized odds,

the sharks simply and forgot

whatever world you chose to swim in

there are sharks who will prefer it

to take it all, or take nothing,

and, for god’s sake, let them!

alexander’s and is out-sticking,

stupid, lonely, even waiting,

but it keeps him clean and breathing,

filled with possibility

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