Poems of Peace and War: Laguna Blue by Mary Ann Crowe

Laguna Blue

In this springtime of yet another wartime
perfectly manicured wisteria blooms
beautifully as ever along Catalina Street
namesake of that elusive island
disappearing now in fog or again in smog
to return some clearer day
Four weeks after the invasion of Ukraine
protesters clothed in yellow and blue
outnumber volleyball players
at historic Main Beach
Honk if you support Ukraine!
while resident pelicans are displaced by Osprey
helicopters flying menacing low in single file
as if strafing the defenseless shoreline
dangerous practice for their next assignment 

Half a block up from hibiscus and bougainvillea
thriving at the corner of Cleo
a homeless man lies motionless on Sleepy Hollow
still as one of the dead outside Kharkiv
or Mariupol––
should I call 911?––
but he has turned over to his other side
by the time we return with groceries––
proof he must be alive, just one of too many
desperate wanderers flung by circumstance
here to the continent’s far Western edge
its scenic farewell a decoration of aquamarine
bays and crescent-shaped stolen beaches
golden treasure once claimed by Spain

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