Gorilla In a German Zoo
—Frankfurt am Main
Big black Buddha, round bald belly
Silver back pressed against green glass
Do your fat feet, your callused pads
Miss the jagged stones of jungle soil?
Do you only beat your breast
When the sloth next door dares move?
They tell me Don't, but still I toss
A peanut through these iron weeds
Me a captive, too, my own boned cage
A little bird asleep inside me
Your slow black hands brush aside a fly
Fingernails edged with foreign dirt
Digging each night, a dream of Uganda
You earth a dark tunnel; and I, a guide
Hide beside a boat, a cloud-covered lake
Each oar dips the black-bugged water
Baskets floating through the Pharaoh's wine
Barrels over rapids, a cascading snore ...
Ah, the tea-green glass
Home, you almost utter
Slow black hands brush aside a fly