Shots in the Dark
Who’d want a burnt chest?
Soaked in vodka, an old fire
barely keeping itself alive.
His shot-out liver might do him in.
At first, it rubs him raw, but it’s an
always-early clock come December.
He needs an ember chest for the ice.
Published in Rejection Letters
Review from Taylor Byas
"This poem is a shot itself - small, but has enough fire to warm me up. I’m so taken with the voice of this poem, the way it feels like someone at the bar has started telling me about their friend after they’ve had a couple of drinks. There’s a feeling of familiarity here that’s irresistible. And let’s face it; “His shot-out liver might do him in” is absolutely a phrase I can hear emerging from bar chatter. This poem plops me down on that bar stool and orders the shot for me."
I breathe in, out the air.
My lungs are smoke screens
against the burning grass,
the burning bushes.
Here I am
Sun setting, flames flickering, face fogging
the window. Silence sat with me while house
music played on. Words spun around my head,
and fear turned my mouth into its spare room.
We’re in a land where tame, wild animals roam
near private lodges — reservations only. A winter
sky is gray on my June day. I’m seventeen on the
seventeenth. It’s almost eight hours later at home.
The days are quick, my words are late, the flight
is on time. Eighteen hours in the air — I don’t have
wings, but I still fly. I’m not free from pressure/cabin
pressure/cabin fever when I get home. It’s all heavy.
I’ve missed my mother
They’ll be here. He’ll be here in a month,
then I’ll have ten days to try again and fail
again and wait again. No burning bushes:
only burning skin dripping water we wish
we could drown in, out these heat waves.
Who am I that I should go to Pharaoh?
Published in River Mouth Review