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Pele’s Goddaughter: for Denia


Pele’s goddaughter, life-coach,

personal trainer, investment counselor, spiritual director; contralto,

popular Luna City council woman, Denia


first earned her acceleration couch

on the regular Tuesday SpaceX run

to Tycho Under, a mere slip of a girl:

4.0 MIT undergrad, hoka-hey!

Starting striker for Pele’s own

Honolulu Sweethearts,

(league champs 2036). And a hotty...


Going stylishly gray now, Denia remembers

waiting for that first liftoff, remembers

(or will remember, it’s much the same) calming her nerves,

going over personal baggage in her mind:

cloud files of family tintypes, Polaroids, brownie b X w’s,

all the brilliant ones of Mai-mai; all

the ones with the horses, (exotic as wookies to her); the ridiculous one

on the surfboard with Sienna and her mom and dad; the old one

with the three little boys watching the amused father

in his brown paper bag hat, what was his name,

mixing waffle batter - all long gone now, all but one precious white-haired old man

calling on her birthday: “Remember

that funny picture?” he asks now everytime.

“Yes, Nonno,” she says, “Yes, of course I remember.”


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From the author's introduction to His Modest Debut: Poems 1970s - 1980s "In the 1970s and early 1980s I did poetry: some good, interesting, fun, some just promising. Pretty much all I wanted to do