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Stinking with male deodorants: we stand here Among teeth and filthy miles Ofunwound tapes, novocaine needles, contracts, champagne Mixed with shower-water, unraveling elastic, bloody faceguards, And the Crab, in his new, high position Works soundlessly. In dying You give us no choice, Coach, Either. We've got to believe there's such a thing As winning. The Sunday spirit-screen Comes on the bruise-colors brighten deepen On the wall the last tooth spits itselffree Ofa line-backer's aging head knee-cartilage cracks, A boy wraps his face in a red jersey and crams it into A rusty locker to sob, and we're with you We're with you all the way You're going forever, Vince. False YOuth: Autumn Clothes oftheAge [for Susan Tuckerman Dickey] Three red foxes on my head, come down There last Christmas from Brooks Brothers As a joke, I wander down Harden Street In Columbia, South Carolina, fur-haired and bald, Looking for impulse in camera stores and redneck greeting cards. A pole is spinning Colors I have little use for, but I go in Anyway, and take offmy fox hat and jacket They have not seen from behind yet. The barber does what he can With what I have left, and I hear the end man say, as my own Hair-cutter turns my face To the floor, Jesus, ifthere's anything I hate It's a middle-aged hippie. Well, so do I, I swallow Back: so do I so do I And to hell. I get up, and somebody else says When're you gonna put on that hat, Buddy? Right now. Another says softly, Goodbye, Fox. I arm my denim jacket On and walk to the door, stopping for the murmur ofchairs, The Strength ofFields / 392 And there it is hand-stitched by the needles ofthe mother Ofmy grandson eagle riding on his claws with a banner Outstretched as the wings ofmy shoulders, Coming after me with his flag Disintegrating, his one eye raveling Out, filthy strings flying From the white feathers, one wing nearly gone: Blind eagle but flying Where I walk, where I stop with my fox Head at the glass to let the row ofchairs spell it out And get a lifetime look at my bird's One word, raggedly blazing with extinction and soaring loose In red threads burning up white until I am shot in the back Through my wings or ripped apart For rags: Poetry. For theRunning oftheNew York CityMarathon Ifyou would run Ifyou would quicken the city with your pelting, Then line up, be counted, and change Your body into time, and with me through the boxed maze flee On soft hooves, saying all saying in flock-breath Take me there. I am against you And with you: I am second Wind and native muscle in the streets my image lost and discovered Among yours: lost and found in the endless panes Ofa many-gestured bald-headed woman, caught between One set ofclothes and tomorrow's: naked, pleading in her wax For the right, silent words to praise The herd-hammering pulse ofour sneakers, And the time gone by when we paced River-sided, close-packed in our jostled beginning, o my multitudes. We are streaming from the many to the one For the Running ofthe New YOrk City Marathon / 393 ...

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