Heather June Gibbons

Velvet Lung

Her calves heavy as mangoes and glowing,
hair done-up come-hither with wax and
vanilla, she banana-dances behind fishing line
strung like tripwire, scuffs around in oversized
galoshes, does a stationary sped-up shimmy,
does an underwater hula-hoop of hips.
Under a clean three-quarter moon
the saplings are holding nicely, calm
in their stays and wrought-iron pens,
oblivious to the tinny music leaking
from a joint called The Velvet Lung
where she’s losing it, laughing so hard
her stage eyes slide down her cheeks
and the audience rises to its feet, instinctively.