The leaves are full of chameleons,
licks of lanky arabesques that leap
from leaf to palm, or drop from eaves,
raining from unguttered roofs.
Shooting in short bursts of speed
Down the gray-green bark
of twisted trees, they zip from color
to color, nearly camouflaged.
Not the least attractive of reptilia,
some have been known to house
in aquariums complacently and
entertain bored school-children
during winter storms. They thrive,
however, in luscious, unspoiled
cover of subtropical vegetations, well-
suited to the backwashes of Florida.
Agile, deceptive, swift—one may note
An uncanny likeness to the id.
The ego, on the other hand, is clumsy,
lugged from one place to another
like suitcases of winter clothes or cellos
on public transportation—or rather
like the slow, endangered manatees,
blubber-faced clowns of warm tidal
river basins, locked in to near-extinction by pleasure-seeking power
boats. One sees them periodically,
lost in blatant paradise, heads surface-
mined and humps full-scarred,
“old bowling balls with eyes, but not so bright,” just below the surface
of the estuary, nudging with primordial
care each other, or some harmless
human swimmer—a careless,
unassuming adolescent, suffering to be
both loved and left alone.