Sunday, April 23, 2017


sunday afternoon in rudy’s bar & grill

christ has risen
but my mind isn’t blown by the idea
and tourists from trumpland
are crowding my streets in easter bonnets and bunny ears
blonde mothers with southern drawls
sending instagram photos of times square
posing for picture with cops
decked out in bullet proof vests
holding machine guns outside the subway station
in the kind of day that could really make you hate america
but here in rudy’s bar & grill the action is sparse
nobody cares that it’s easter or that the mets are on
that it’s ninety degrees in april
and we’re hiding from the heat too soon
there are maybe five of us
holiday throwaways
drinking three dollar pints and two dollar shots
the guy a stool down from my wife
is bragging to the ancient bartender
about his twenty-seven year old girlfriend
like the difference between thirty-four and twenty-seven
is something to be looked at in awe
i tell my wife
if he were fifty years old maybe i’d be impressed
which might be wrong to say
to the only woman in the bar
and i think about how i haven’t been in rudy’s in years
maybe once or twice since the days
when their free hot dogs
counted as a luxurious friday night dinner in the city
and we sat in the bar all night drinking cheap beer
safe from the temp jobs that couldn’t even pay the rent
watching hell’s kitchen get drunker and drunker
men dancing alone to old blues songs
because we didn’t want to go home
to that shithole apartment with the bass upstairs
and the gang members on the next door stoop
i think about how time moves too fast
yet too slow at times
about all of the easters that i wasted on christ as a youth
how i’ve lost my taste for bars and hot dogs
and even twenty seven year old women
how i’ve never had taste for cops and america
how i wish all of the tourists with twangs in times square
would go the hell home
back to the states that hate my city
taking their easter bonnets and bunny ears and the heat
and poor jesus christ on his poor little cross
back down there below the mason/dixon line with them
to rot most pleasantly
in that hot southern heat.                                                           

--John Grochalski                                    

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