Portrait of an L.A. Daughter

hannahTake #1

Her third eye is strawberry jam
has a little iris in it
her eyelids
are red
she’s sleepy
and the milk
has gone down
the wrong way.
I’ve just had breakfast
with the smallest person in the world.

* * *

Take #2

Braided blonde hair
white and pink barrettes
Bette Davis gorgeous
I hug her
dreamy daughter with no make-up
silver skull and crossbones
middle (“don’t mess with me”)
three or four others in each ear
rings in her navel
rings on her thumbs
gentle moonchild
“pal” she announces
to “Porno for Pyros”
formerly the group “Jane’s Addiction”
“Nothing’s Shocking”
with Perry Farrell
Dave Navarro on guitar
and Stephen Perkins
on drums
“Ain’t No Right” they sing
she plays it for me loud
“Been Caught Stealing”
they sing
and “Ted Just Admit It”
“Every body everybody everybody’s-”

I hug her
Shalimar fruit smell
Oil of Olay
Wet ‘n’ Wild lip gloss
diamond stud earrings
and glitter on her cheeks

Hannah Davi -a new name-
walk-on in the movie “Day Of Atonement”
with Christopher Walken

Wan, she’s looking wan
my dancing girl daughter

And a part in a Levitz Furniture ad
(“it’s work”)
and a part in an MCI commercial
(“Best Friends”)
breaking in
“Brotherhood Of Justice”
“Lost Boys”
“Private Lessons”

a Swiss Alps bar-maid
(“classic blonde Gretel”)
in a Folger’s Coffee commercial

“Grunge is in” she says
visiting Santa Cruz
“any Goodwill’s around?”

* * *

“crowning” says the doctor

“Hannah” says her mother
“the name means ‘grace'”

Two-year-old drooling
as lying on my back
I toss her into space
and back
she falls
and back
into space again

Flawless teeth and perfect smile
one blue eye slightly larger than the other
her three thousand miles away mother
still present as
two as one
two breathing together
we three breathe again as one
Hannah O Hannah

-Robert Sward