I met a descendant of Zebulon Pike (Pike’s Peak)
in Santa Fe. She told me that she thought a blow job
was when you went to the beauty salon to get your
hair done¬, I mean your hair down there.
She thought it was a blow/dye job, maybe
a blue rider [cobalt for the cold Colorado nights]
or a low chapparal [for the tough brush and desert
browns] She shared all this with her teenage friends,
and they believed. They had questions:
If it’s a dirty thing with boys, then why do you
go to the salon?
I was always afraid of it, but now I think I’ll
get a desert gold
[landing strip the color of home-grown maize]
The burning question: if Pike’s Peak is one of the
biggest cocks in the world
(highest of the southern Front Range of the Rockies)
then shouldn’t there be a fourteener?
[longest tallest pussy hair west of the Mississippi—
bleached and snow-covered]
What would Zebulon say?
He was a fan of the front range, why not
the pink granite (sexier than potassium feldspar)
[pink front lawn with shaved steps to glory]
the chokecherry (for thorny S&M)
[dark red with a too-tight weave]
When her friends made an appointment for a blow job,
they sat under the dryers in the salon, their heads
fried. My friend, the descendant, found out about
sucking, became a blue rider, and the 14,115 ft. cock
of the Rockies erupted.
JAN BEATTY’S books include The Switching/Yard, Red Sugar, Boneshaker, and Mad River (Agnes Lynch Starrett Prize), published by the University of Pittsburgh Press. Beatty hosts and produces Prosody, a public radio show on NPR affiliate WESA-FM featuring national writers. She worked as a welfare caseworker, an abortion counselor, in maximum security prisons, and as a waitress for fifteen years. She directs the creative writing program at Carlow University, where she teaches in the MFA program.