by Ernest Tjia
Mural by Ráed Al-Rawi
At the Charlotte Douglas Airport there is a mural
featuring an alligator flying, wearing a yellow
dress shirt that has been tailored-fit to
act like a cape, and he has a red tie
that is parallel to his body in the wind, that looks
like it was clipped on instead of worn.
Of course, the trick is that it was indeed, painted
on, and I wonder what that says
about the Bank of America whose headquarters are
located on 100 North Tryon street.
I remember the bailout to the tune of twenty billion dollars
issued by the Troubled Asset Relief Program
in which some moneylenders and corporate suits
made a bad decision. Maybe two.
Or more. I’ve lost count. What I do know:
The first forms of modern insurance
predate the founding of the Republic
that issued the three-fifths compromise.
In capitalist ruins there is the figure of a woman
in a pantsuit, who has just bought ownership
of her first home, and plans to decorate it
with art, and flowers you can only get
from a specialty florist up in the Appalachians
who sells them by the double-dozen.
There are pennyworts and bloodroots and rue
anemones, accompanied by the sweet
southern twang, that awful lonesome
song of a Mountaineer.
Ernest Tjia is a graduate student at the Pennsylvania State University’s department of English. His current poetic project is tentatively titled United States of Affairs.