Sonata for Henry George

Henry George went to the doctor
and got a CAT scan of the head. 

Henry George took his CAT scan, when
he emerged from the machine

and walked the long way down the street
which involved crossing at every intersection

Henry George met the same middle age
at every corner, headless

and winding down like clockwork, a dog leashed and muzzled
beside it, its bent knee swaying out of time. 

Henry George walked into town
with his CAT scan and met a girl

named Tilda. Tilda was dreadfully
interesting and dreadfully interested.

Tilda and Henry George and his CAT
scan talked over peachy booze with real

canned peach slices you could squeeze in like lemons
but syrupy and oozy and orange. Tilda said she didn’t

see the point in going somewhere
when you could go anywhere in your head

the flowers on her dress ogling him
and his CAT scan with their little red eyes.

Henry George went home with his CAT scan
went to bed with his CAT scan

on the bedside table and dreamed
that Tilda cheated on him, sucking neck

with his CAT scan behind the tree
at his grandmother’s Christmas party.

There were sticky balsam needles
in her hair. Oh Cynthia, he cried,

how could you? To which
Tilda, flattening her skirt

before all of the grandmothers
said, At least your CAT scan knows

loyalty, at least it follows
through. He dreamed of each
hairy strand of peach flesh
being separated by Tilda’s teeth.

Henry George had gone to the doctor
and gotten a CAT scan of the head. He woke 

from a dream to meet his CAT scan face-to-face.
It licked its nether regions

and walked twice around
the bed. He wondered if Tilda

would go anywhere with it, since it didn’t have
a brain. He took it out back to shoot it

but didn’t have a gun, just a scraper for peeling
paint off of walls and a near-empty weedkiller pump.

Henry George flattened his CAT scan against
the driveway, pumped weedkiller onto its

bleachy surface and watched it curl like a Fortune
Teller Miracle Fish and die in the sunlight.