Listen, I do not understand Italian;
but I will translate. Rudolpho, eating sushi, sings of opening
a Japanese restaurant with Mimi; mixes soba noodles, tomatoes
and garlic—and a sudden joy for the life
on Columbus Avenue; he continues to sing
of becoming the new management
grandly opening a Butterfly Returns­­­­—a few blocks up on Amsterdam Avenue.
A wonderful plot; and they do
need the work. Ruldolpho wrote—then burnt his best tragedy.
Now he seems to be groping for words.
Now he swears he knows Lieutenant Pinkerton
and a Cafe Momus franchise would do well
In Nagasaki. He has family there.
Now he mumbles something about Abraham Lincoln sailing tomorrow.
Of course it is only make believe.
Watch for the common burdock to sprout
between canvas cobblestones;
and when I pull the hemp rope on cue
a snow drifts large paper crystals—
fire proof flakes that float, spin,
bounce from the scrim
and into the wings. They will cling to the floor
and become square plate crystals impossible sweep
on the act change.