About this light: a million dirty moons
in the sweaty air, a thousand cattle in the hills.
Cat shriek, overspill of TV just out of ear-
shot, breakers of traffic in the cool still.
Palms never sleep as buildings roll on ball
bearings, coils thick as twisted torsos sway
like reeds in the dusty breeze of the big one—
—quakes hop-scotch across faults as P waves
rearrange the topography: down suddenly
and sideways: liquefied soil like so many
drunk molecules or strings of energy shifted
into new social circles. Concrete loses to weeds
of rising rents in L.A., of the lifeless air within
this structure, rugs over carpets below stairs
worn in patterns, in pathways, in dark streaks
down the middle of each freeway lane.