– after Jasper Johns, Green Target
Green hears me singing the blues and intervenes.
She follows me into my dreams posing as curtain,
as cycle, as movie star. She offers a bottle of herself,
mint julep. Smitten, I am, and swamp haze.
Until I come upon my fear of the snake in her.
Of the lizard tail she can release and leave
dangling in my grasp. Spiraling her concentric
swirls around my wrist, I cogitate heartbeat
and conception. In retrospect, she remains
forever at my childhood side, protean, pliable,
and perfectly plausible. When I break away
to pursue my other love – blue – she reminds me
I can simply add the yolk of sun to summon her return.
Now if I can just omit fear from my life,
I’ll be young again, full of bull’s-eye & whirligig.
Karen Neuberg is a Brooklyn-based writer whose work has appeared in DIAGRAM, Paper Nautilus, Phoebe, and Superstition Review, among others. Her chapbook, Detailed Still, was published by Poets Wear Prada, and her chapbook, Myself Taking Stage, is forthcoming from Finishing Line Press. Links to her work can be found at karenneuberg.blogspot.com.