Nicole walked out of Aladdin’s yesterday
which is why The Exterminator is working
12-8. He claims to have trained himself
to have a perfect, photographic memory.
He has Kool-Aid hair and anime eyes.
After the shift a group of us and
The Exterminator go to Brubaker’s
for drinks and we smoke in his car.
He is no different outside of work.
Constant buzzing, endless movement,
dead wings everywhere. He says
he learned his dancing from night
walks at 3 AM, and we all picture
his headphones in the darkness:
sudden hand movements, a quiet flying
his neighbors would never notice.
(originally published in Children, Churches, & Daddies, Fall 2021)
In Kathleen’s apartment in Oregon,
I ask her where even is home?
maybe never knowing.
I see my mom’s mown lawn
in the green fields our baseball
team travels through, my friends
in tweets spitting scores or stats.
These, I don’t care about,
but I join in discussion.
Blue hands to high-five,
then to put my phone down.
(originally published in Hobart, Winter 2018)
mouth greasy from chicken finger oil I finally tell you
I love you the bowling alley piss-like or flower
petals words thrown down slick lane
quick spin make thunder in falling
pins in front of us no matter
strike or split or spare or miss
(originally published in The Magnolia Review, Fall 2017)