Sunstruck While Chopping Cotton

S
It was at first a single image.
A mirage-like illusional dance
Wavering and decomposing in the
Distance like a plastic mosaic.

Then it cleared.

Not one but three Bothisattvas
Suspended in a cloud of yellow dust
Just above the rows of cotton
Galloping comically on skeletal mounts
Across the arid, sponge-like lust
Of a desiccated desert.

They ride by, shouting in ruthless unison
The name of Jesus, across the valley
Halting not for an instant in their trek
To the distant sea.

The cool sea.

With flame throwers for nostrils
Their horses flee
Abreast the three
Halting whole freeways of awe-stricken traffic
And scattering chattering choppers
Welcoming the enormous episode as an excuse
For frolic and fanfare.
They enter the sea and immediately get

Cut down by surf boards sharp as razors
And oil-well derricks entangle them
And the horses, not being divine, drown.
And the Bothisattvas, mountless in the mire
Choke and struggle, making the Long Beach
Waters thick with blood, mud and crude oil.

But they are determined, and they walk
Nimbly and bloodied on the cracked-mirror
Surface with all the humility of the East
Then they forget and break into a run
Leaving bloodied footprints upon the blue waters,
Running, running, toward the setting sun.

Shouting, Jesus saves!
In ruthless unison.

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