Stretching for Allusion

I wonder how some lines in a poem by Tim Dlugos play out if you don’t connect with an allusion to Raymond Burr’s character, Perry Mason, in Ironside. The gestural quality transcends the allusion:

Like wheelchair detectives
we reach for the sky

The reader gets to participate in that “we” that denotes the speaking voice and the intended recipient of “Note to J.A.” and to experience a sympathetic response to the poem’s ending:

Like wheelchair detectives
we reach for the sky

and come back with hands
full of energy. It
dissipates faster than
our eyes can record.

One small detail that makes the allusion recede and allows those challenged by popular culture references to enjoy the poem is that “detectives” appears in the plural. It’s a species not a specimen.

And so for day 754

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