Reenactment as America’s Most Wanted #48

Fritz Ward


You’re just his stand-in.

You’re the man that makes the ficus
by the bay window look less loved.

You simulate a bare yellow bulb
and strategic cobwebs, cinder blocks

and composite crooks, genuine
poverty.  You stand just             

If you stare at a wallet-size reproduction
of his face, you can make your eyes like ice

over an orange grove. If the director desires
your nose closer to your lips, you conform,

you transpire. When you achieve him—
the electrical fire and locust—

there’s no feeling to mimic it,
a faux gun in your man’s hand

and the left side of our mockingbird 
brain falling fast asleep:

Take twenty one.
Take twenty two.

We move the massacre
to the foreground. The children learn

how to fall into their shadows.
Shhhh, you’re only here to hurry the rain

into my heart.