Purple Prose

By Peter Halstead

Writing on a flowered pad
(Made ostensibly from trees that had,
In their prime, equivalent flowers,
Just as florid, in their time, as ours)
With a flower-covered pen
(Its blossoms equally ungenuine,
Painted in hibiscus tints
On the pen's circumference—
Laurels planted purposely, that is,
To connote the writer's high-flown status)—
An embarrassment of buds as such
Which could be seen as two too much,
As two equal arguments ajoint
Might negate the other's point,
And a second pinstriped tout
Should sponge his rival's moment out,
Such an emphasis of merchandise
Conveys a certain kind of paradise,
And one should at least try to live in
The environment that's given
And put up with, or leaven,
Even artifacts of heaven—
So my clumsily-made kitsch is
A font, in fact, of hidden bridges—
Flamboyant as it seems to be,
Overwrought and touristy,
A stamen still emerges with a click
From its over-decorated Bic,
Flowering just as much as
The undergrowth it touches.

Duke's Beach, Waikiki
September 29th, 2002

Redone October 20th, 2002