In Honor of Isla Vista

A Spiritual Poem in Five Minutes

When I think of spirit I think of Pirate

drinking on Pardal accepting a plate of Shabbat

dinner salmon on Friday night when he tells jokes

You kind of have to step back away from his face

so the spirits don’t get in the way.

One night his friend Abraham approaches us

offers to explain our Hebrew names.

“Ah, Shoshana,” he says to Shauna.

“Light.” “David—Strength.”

He peers at me through monocle eyes, says:

“Julia—from the English: Jewel.”

Pirate laughs so hearty from his perch,

clutching salmon to his chest,

coughing up spirits.