Thursday, December 17, 2015

poem of the day 12.17.15

the ghost of pennoak manor drive

marilyn finally calls
on this night of all nights
says, you sound like you’re
in the middle of the street
five cop cars racing up
my little dead end block
i tell her i don’t know what’s going on
marilyn says, anyway i heard you called
four times, i think, while she was in jersey
as cop cars surround my neighbor’s house
marilyn back from two weeks in jersey
where she roamed her kid streets
and dropped her prudish act
to drink in bars with old friends
sweet lemony sugar drinks, she says
cops going up the neighbor’s driveway
to murder screams tv blasts electric guitar chords
and the sound of a motorcycle revving in a garage
are you sure you’re not outside, marilyn says
it’s my neighbor, jim, i tell her, and the cops
she says, i thought about you drinking those drinks
and wouldn’t you know it?
but on the plane ride back to pittsburgh
i got stuck sitting next to some christian fundamentalist
who kept asking me what i’d say
agnostically, of course, if god to spoke to me
impossible, i say
but not to marilyn to cops frog marching
crater-faced restless jim down his driveway
pressed up against the white car swirling blue/red lights
marilyn says, that’s what i told him
she says, you know i already feel comfortable talking to you
and i laugh
thinking she feels comfortable talking to me?
comfortable in my humorous madness restless heart
that wants to just finally get on a greyhound bus
and shoot straight to d.c. with colby and hit bars
drink the same sugar lemony drinks and make love words
to d.c. girls who don’t know me from anything
girls i’ll never have to muster the courage to see again
or have to call four times while they’re in jersey
this is what marilyn is comfortable with?
what’s happening? she says
i mean with your neighbor
they’re arresting jim letting jim go, i think
but the cops stick around
marilyn says, so are we getting together or what?
late may i’ve been at this with her for a month
to no success
yaass, yaass, i neal cassidy into the phone
groucho slouch around my room
looking for a paper and a pen to transcribe our fate
look out the window
jim whose crazed antics are legend on this street
jim who begged his wife to knife him last fourth of july
jim rumored to mentally torture his family
jim rumored to have killed his girlfriend’s dog
back in the sixties
jim the great satan shroud of pennoak manor drive
dressed year round in camouflage 
ghost white skin and bones
i’m sorry
i’m sorry
into the black night
while his wife and kids cry on the porch
while the cops slouchwatch against their doors
while the cops pushpullshove him into the backseat
and marilyn says, it sure sounds crazy
where you live.


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