The heads lined up down either side
of the aisle⸺some wreathed with thinning
hair, some resting on impatient hands,
and some bobbing excitedly in conversation⸺
aren’t listening to the flight attendants. Neither
am I, “Mezzogiorno” on full blast. The bust
of one mother dangles over her armrest
as she wipes the drool off her little boy’s cheek;
her cone earrings hug her neck like the ones
we saw on Agrippina, returned to her glass
case after years in a dentist’s closet looking
none too amused, still sour about her son.
But we hardly saw that manic artist’s likeness
anywhere, most of them picked away
into Domitian’s, Apollo’s, or any number
of petty local heroes’ whose name never
outlived their borrowed face. The burly
attendant catches my eye, scowls,
and pretends to tear my ears off.
Joshua Jones, originally from the Shenandoah Valley, is a third year candidate for the MFA in creative writing at UMass Boston. He has poems published in or forthcoming from Fourteen Hills, Coldnoon: Travel Poetics, and The Sow’s Ear Poetry Review among others. He lives in Dorchester with his wonderfully nerdy wife Lesleigh and their miniature dachshund Guinivere.
© 2015 Window Cat Press