Hocus pocus is hocus pocus
Even if it is a Mayan chant
I wonder if this poet, with her dark, mournful face,
intoning in language none of us can comprehend
and her accompanist, tapping on his rawhide drum, tipping his rain-stick,
making sounds like wind howling down the canyon walls,
are playing us gringos for fools
as we sit straight in our chairs, all hushed and reverent.
It must be good stuff,
since we can’t understand it, and
ought to listen now, at last.
Are they laughing up their sleeves
like the Indians in Freddy the Detective
who squat at the side of the road in buckskin
selling baskets for wampum, speaking with hand-signals
for many moons
then going home to white wine, Chopin
and a book discussion?