from the Uppity Blind Girl poems
Darkness ricochets like a rifle shot-
ambushing trees, felling power lines-
Before Uppity and the night
were conjoined twins,
two girls on the town ready to raise
a glass at happy hours or to throw
frozen margaritas at intruders.
Now, tapping her cane, guiding Sabrina
and her dog Toto into her apartment,
a flooded, blacked-out maze,
Uppity and the night were no longer BFFs.
I've never been captured by the dark,
Uppity said, huddling with Sabrina,
Toto's muddy tail smacking against their shoes,
but this blackness has nearly
trapped me in its acrid arms.
My fingertips eagerly browse
Braille menus; they never expected
to be clawing for food at the dump.
My cane knows gutters, manholes,
flowerbeds, subways and steps.
It is unschooled in floating, lifeless
bodies, shuttered trains and the remnants
of drowned cars.
Only the warmth of Sabrina's breathing
and the salt of Toto's tongue
free me to escape the cold clutches of the dark.