Thursday, October 23, 2014

poem of the day 10.23.14

did it leave a mark?
            --after hosho mccreesh

it seemed all the boys in school had bb guns
as if they were going through a gun toting phase

in the era of reagan, rambo and the terminator
they were the closest those boys in the suburbs
could get to actual violence
without fists and blood

i didn’t have a bb gun
i had baseball cards and baseball gloves
and beatles records instead

my old man told me
with your luck, son, you’d find a way to kill yourself

which was probably true

and no one wanted to become an anecdote
to a soon-to-be-classic christmas film

so i indulged my violent tendencies whenever i could
hanging around the lucky
shooting targets in the dirt or taped onto trees
aiming at squirrels or winter birds

ray hardy had old baseball cards
that he’d line up on a pool table in his basement

we’d shoot at them
putting holes in pete rose and nolan ryan
and the other cards we’d never kept in good enough condition
to one day retire on

ray’s bb gun was one of those pump guns
or they were all pump guns

again…i wouldn’t know

one time when it was my turn to fire
i pumped that mother the full ten pumps

and like the idiot that i was
i fired it right off while ray was still setting us up
a field of von hayes cards

i got him right in the ass cheek

then i stood there
a clueless john wayne on a vast wyoming range
while ray danced around his basement
screaming and crying

shit, i hoped his parents wouldn’t come down
i was happy that they listened to their television loudly

when ray finally calmed
and came over to me wiping his eyes
i thought that he was going to take the gun
and beat me with it

shoot me right in my ass too

but instead he hopped on an edge of the pool table
and pulled down his pants

ray showed me his bare left ass cheek
with one amazing red welt plastered on it

looking at me so sad and expectant
before he said

jesus christ, man



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