We are Approaching 50 and We are Scared Because of Our Jobs

featured in the poetry forum February 2, 2019  :: 1 comment

They are not respectful
jobs.
Melissa is a clerk and she says
her legs have been chopped off
from standing when she should be sitting.
Joe works in a shoe shop
and says that he would murder
a shoe
if you could murder a shoe
but you can’t murder a shoe

because he has tried,
taking an ax
to his shoes,
drunk,
chopping with the assurance
of a salesman.
And I work security,
which means that people talk to me
like I’m a cop
with no authority,

which I am,
letting me know
that it’s OK with them
if I commit suicide
as long as my suicide
is a vacation,
as long as it is quiet and behaved,
locked in a corner
where the magazines
rot.

editors note:

Outrageous! Such flagrant ageism, job-ism, who cares-ism. I’m scared, too. (While we have enjoyed Ron’s work in our Short Stories forum for a few years now, we are pleased to welcome Ron to our crazy congress of Contributing Poets with this submission. Read all of his madness, short stories and poems, on his new page – check it out.) – mh clay

And

featured in the poetry forum November 16, 2018  :: 0 comments

They didn’t know it,
but there were hazmat buildings
right next to an elementary school.
We were separated by a deep ravine
and trees that I was told

couldn’t be removed
without biohazard gear,
the branches so infected
that you could break them open
and a devil made entirely made of snow

would pop out.
Through a small clearing
I found a spot
where I could see the elementary school
looking like a romantic comedy film star

sunning on a boring Tuesday.
I screamed to it
to run
but it didn’t listen.
I turned around

and went back in the building
where I was told
I would be exposed to radiation
whether I liked it or not.
I didn’t.

editors note: We may bloom toxic now, but half-life is forever. – mh clay

Water

featured in the poetry forum September 10, 2018  :: 1 comment

People ask me
if I believe in God
and every time they do
I think of kissing her neck
from behind with her hands
in the sink, holding the wine
carafe like she loved glass.

editors note:

Love (and cleanliness) is next to what you believe. – mh clay

For the Love of Santa

August 26, 2017  :: 0 comments

Ever since I was a zygote, my father told me that Santa wasn’t real. I’d unwrap my presents on Christmas and afterwards he’d show me all of the receipts and tell me that they didn’t come from the North Pole but from KMart. He’d tell me it would be physically impossible to live on the North Pole unless you’re a …

The Gun Shop

May 13, 2016  :: 0 comments

The gun shop sign, I have to admit, was shimmering. Other than that, it was a piece of shit, but the sun blessed the thing when I drove up. I was armed with statistics. My hands were shaky. I’d wanted to do this for a long time. I knew how many kids kill themselves with guns each year. I had …

Ado

July 27, 2015  :: 1 comment

I had a girlfriend who got caught up in a tornado. And I mean up. An actual tornado. It was in Iowa, I think. One of those shitty vowel states. She was babysitting and took the kids to a silo apocalypse shelter that the crazy farmer dad had made and the youngest kid wanted her stuffed giraffe named Ollie or …

Hoot

October 10, 2014  :: 0 comments

Shirtless and covered in blood, I walked into the Hooters. John Donne said, God is an angel in an angel, and a stone in a stone, and a straw in a straw. God is a bloody, shirtless man in a Hooters in a bloody, shirtless man in a Hooters. I’d fallen on glass. I was drunk. My sister worked there. …

Clown

May 23, 2014  :: 0 comments

The frat near Whittier decided to have a clown party. It was Good Friday and seemed like the thing to do. Nine teenagers from the party decided to cram into a top-down convertible and drive home. It’s what clowns do. Pile into a car. But clowns usually don’t do that drunk on a major California highway. The car hit a …