Currency

“Money is a kind of poetry.”
~Wallace Stevens

A kind of currency. Lingua franca. Electric voltage to jumpstart a body or fry it to a crisp. Everything is bark. Words. Mots. Palabras. Pesetas. Copper. Argent. What a verbal illustration. Tip dessin vert. Mint species. Poetry is green olive and foliage. It will buy you a lover. Keep you in debt. Make you use bills for scratch. Jot your bliss. Spend it. It is vibrational. Tonal. Clinking in your pocket. You’ve got some. Everyone hears it. Wants it. “Just keys,” you say. Honestly. We’re bound by an imaginary trust to compensate for a world we could never afford. A cent is more magnificent in its power than its form. The opposite is true sometimes too. Shells. Buttons. It attempts to replace all things it cannot be. Tender to feed children, who will always hunger. We want it. We want it until our change is perceptual. We see trees different. We learn the value of patching a deflated tube inside a tire on the shoulder of an empty highway. No promises, but to leave a memory imprinted on the grooves and creases of palms and fingers. We exchange notes on a history of dead men and wonder. Is it a means or an end to suffer? I drop my heaviest coins into the mouth of a washing machine to shake the debris from the skins that protect me. Spin. Slide on a magnetic strip. Data. Plastic. Rarely seen or held. Easily drained.

Published by Lia Yaranon Hall

My name is Lalla. I was a 14th century poet in Kashmir and worshipped Lord Siva. I died and fell from an evergreen tree in the Pacific Northwest (47° 36? 36? N, 122° 19? 48? W). My Lolo found me in an ivy patch. I spent most of my formative years on the coast of the South China Sea spearing fish until I became a "vegetarian" (but we didn't call ourselves that in those days). Shortly after vowing ahimsa, I moved to New York, unironically, under the guise of "poet" so that I could perform aerial stunts and acrobatics for an underground circus called the.

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