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MartyImage

Surreal surpasses
Undulates and flows through
Like a teasing, flaunting nymph
I can almost hear the giggle of doom
As I sit there in the car,
Windows rolled down
Wind whipping against struggling embers
And the bitter ashes of hopelessness
Between these bodies
Of Flesh and Bone
Beneath the masks and distractions
Are buried secrets and lies
Intrigues and plots
Devious machinations
At which the worms eat away
Until all is exposed
The Ugly Truth
Decomposed and ancient
That time, however, is not upon us
Not yet
Until then that knowledge
Will rest within me
Guarded and
Secure
And it will lend me power
As a God
To rule over lives
To hold their fate in my hands
But that is only temporary
When the dawn of understanding
Arrives
Power will give way to inevitable destruction
Those precious lives,
Once dangling precariously
Dangerously
On my puppet strings,
Those lives are now ruined
Shattered
And me?
Like the storm
I move on
To laugh and rage
In some other distant place
While the rest
Just
Pick up the pieces

my reward coupon came
from the soda company.

‘Good For One
Free Soda’, it
read in bold,
black letters.

I was broke
that day and
thirsty as hell.

this was like
a godsend.

so I went over to my
neighborhood
market.

I could taste the
cool sweetness
of soda already.

I went to the case
and grabbed my
free bottle.

I went up to the
register and presented
the girl with
the bottle and coupon.

“6 cents,” she blandly said,
as she scanned the coupon.

“Huh?” I asked. “It’s free.”

“They still charge you tax
on it,” the girl hastily
explained.

“I don’t have it, I don’t have
6 cents on me. It’s supposed
to be free,” I stated, an edge in
my voice.

“I want my damn soda, lady.
I’m broke, thirsty, and its too
early for this shit.”

my words were hoarse
and ugly through gritted
teeth.

the girl, her broad face
turning like a wide
beaming spotlight, looked
at me.

eyes narrow, regarding me
strangely.

she shrugged and rang
the sale through.

“Thank you,” I said,
still being a gentleman.

I took my bottle
and went home,
enjoying my soda
and savoring the victory.

it’s moments like
these that it all
comes together
and

makes sense.

The store manager
Was partially blind
Had no taste buds
And was a lesbian
She gave her niece’s
Boyfriend a job there
Because he knocked
The niece up

The assistant manager
Had five teeth
Looked like a butch lesbian
And had a Colombian boyfriend
If they weren’t fucking and
Smoking behind the dumpsters
Me and him would drink Coronas
And he’d play me Calle 13 and Magog de Oz

The Colombian would tell me
Where to find the best coke
And hookers in Colombia
And where to avoid the guerillas
The niece’s boyfriend
Would try to sell me
Shitty weed and
Tell me how much he loves the niece

The second assistant manager
Had sex with her boyfriend
In the bun freezer while
She was counting buns
Afterwards her husband would come by
Drunk and coked up
Accused her of cheating
Then he would hit her

When the spectacular was over
And they had made up
The second assistant manager
Gave her hubby a chocolate shake
And a few salads on the house
Then her sister-in-law came in with the kids
That she had been babysitting
And they would all go on as if nothing ever happened

To be a manager
Does not require leadership
But endurance for the
Strange and terrible
If they ever opened
My can of worms
I would own
The whole damn chain

you flutter over like
a butterfly
making its way through
spring glens and tombstones
of the long dead
you are gentle
you are strong
when I look into
those dark eyes
my soul erupts
in your presence
I light up like
fire alive
what is it about you
that I
adore?
your smile
your laugh
your charm
your grace
your eyes like
when you look to
the side
when you talk to someone
like when they
look inside me and
kiss my soul
like when they bring
electricity
I miss your toes
and your feet like
when I message them
like the way you rub them
together
the way you handle the
princess and the
mustang
I miss your refuge too
I miss ordering pizza
before 5pm (otherwise
they wouldn’t drive into
to the ghetto, remember?)
and the way you play
with Sandy
the way you yell at
her to take
a shit
I miss setting up
the cardboard boxes
to eat dinner on
and Sunday morning
kisses
the way you care
the way you don’t care
I miss
the way you eat
chicken scampi
I miss
baby girl, grandpa,
and the one on your
wrist too
I miss
the way you dance
all the things I adore
are all the things
I miss
about
you
mint chocolate chip
will never be the same
olive garden
will never be the same
wine
will never be the same
Frank
will never be the same
without
you

it’s been six months
since I last held
a job.

now here I am,
stumbling about
in the early morning.

there is a hangover
waging war in my
worn body.

the wind stirs the nausea
as the world spins
and clashes against my eyes.

I’ve vomited twice
and feel another
coming at any moment.

I am fragile in the
sunlight.

the train ride isn’t
any better.

swaying with people, perfume, cologne
newspapers, coffee.

I silently pray for
the train to crash
so this could all be over.

sudden death would be
preferable to the sickness
but I don’t get my wish.

I try to think about my woman
but the poison stops me
without any mercy.

I arrive in White Plains
and make my way
to the bookstore.

each step is a struggle
to stay alive.

no more, please.

let me just turn back
and lie down.

I make it to the store
and see the manager
for my training.

she is explaining
store procedures
and policy.

all I can hear is
my guts trying to
explode inside.

all I see is
a dead person
speaking words
that fall like death.

I am shifting
between worlds
reality and not,
heaven and hell.

first day of work.

another day of death.

we’ve been here
before and will
probably be here again.

until then…

 

He’s 19 and selling weed
Is his full time job
He has his own house
And drives a nice Cadoo.

His girl is young
But built like a woman
Tits that’ll knock your block off
And an ass that defies all logic.

They always talk about
How much they love
Each other
And someday will marry.

They invited me over one night
To drink and smoke.

While they drank the lightweight
Stuff
Miller and Bud Light
I was kicking back on
Steel Reserve and Hurricane.

They looked at me
Like I was crazy
After I polished off
Tall boy after tall boy.

I tell them it’s 8.1% alcohol
And it requires 100% balls to
Drink.

It’s a commitment.

I could tell he got mad at that comment
As he sheepishly looked
At his half-full
Bottle of Miller.

After an hour it was still
His first one.

He told me he was about to
Open a laundry mat
With his drug money.

Yep, he said, I’ll be rich
Before I’m even 21.

And what have you been up to?
He asked, faux interest lacing his
Words.

Drinkin’, smokin’, writing,
Being broke, I replied.

Damn bro, that’s a shame, he says
And you’re 32 now right?

Yea, but I have no regrets
The passion outweighs the struggle.

When I said that
his girl gave me a look.

A flash in her azure blue eyes,
Eyes that could make
A man come where he stood.

Well, I’m hungry. How about some Taco Bell?
On me.
He asked as he got up.

Sure, I said. Get me whatever you’re getting.

You coming babe? He asked his girl.

No, I’m gonna clean up the bottles babe,
You go ahead, she said.

He then looked at me. Do you want
To stay or come with?

No, I’ll stay, I want to finish
Off my beer before the food
Comes, I said.

I don’t like to drink and eat.

Suit yourself, I’ll be back.
He got his keys and left.

Silence.

Then we heard the Cadoo
Pull away and
Rumble off into the night.

It was just her and me.

She sat down next to me,
Still giving me that look.

You know, Marty, I think
You’re a real man, money
Isn’t everything, she said.

How about I fuck you like
A real man? I asked her.

And so Taco Bell wasn’t the only thing
On him that night.