Monday, May 29, 2017


joey america

joey america
loves budweiser
he keeps telling everyone on the circle line
american beer for america
the evening of a ninety degree day
and we’re packed like cattle on this thing
my parent’s idea but i aim to please
although i’ve been battling a fever
and the shits for three days
being packed on anything feeling that way
is akin to death
i can’t even get a budweiser down
i’ve been sober for two days now
and want to commit murder
but instead i sit there and hope
that i don’t have to shit on the boat
as joey america and everyone around him
get up to take pictures of gleaming manhattan
you gotta wave, he says
gotta wave, joey tells everyone
then he shouts and hoots
at every boat we pass on the hudson
screams and chants USA! USA! as fighter jets pass overhead
i wonder where they manufacture guys like joey america
is it the water or the breeding?
some factory out in the heartland?
red white and blue cargo shorts and dipshit sandals
in fact, most of the people around me
are wearing something american
one guy has a t-shirt that says, pride
with an image of a soldier busting out of an american flag
he and joey america should go bowling
that is if i don’t rip the budweiser out of his hands
and push him into the river
never forget! joey shouts when we get to the world trade center
never effin forget! he says, looking around the boat
before he holds his can of beer up to the mammoth building
like a lighter at a rock concert during an anthem
another iconic moment for an iconic city
or maybe it’s just a beer commercial he’s ripping off
because sometimes you can’t tell the difference
between the two in this country.

-- John Grochalski


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