(Selecting lines at random from The Vintage Book of Contemporary American Poetry, then crafting them into something entirely different, then stringing it all together in an attempt to actually write something decent for once. Don’t really think it worked, but oh well. Practice is as practice does.)
It takes a special obscurity to rot
bananas like this house does, all
flapping, gummy rinds spotted
in the window, hungry deer gazing
in, then fleeing at the creak on the stairs,
the percolating coffee.
My flea-bitten hip bumps the fruit bowl atop the dish
washer, and in that moment, I can’t tell what is a
good war or a bad war and whether my father likes Ann
Coulter or just likes
brown, creased apples.
When I run over the oppossum tonight
I smell hot, wet pavement and, curiously,
My brother rains at times, feels unwanted and beats
his shivering, brand new puppy when it pisses
hot and fresh
on his bedspread. The puppy comes back thick and grateful,
all cow spots and pink belly. My brother will smoke
until his hands become wise, until his fingernails
wither. Nicotine and tall tales and thieving for drug-money.
I don’t want to write about death — they all do —but
then the bananas blacken and Aunt Fran shrinks
beneath cancer from the waist up, and I beat
a single drum on a oppossum with my tires, smash
a cricket for singing
too loud in the stems of the peace lily
and some muggers kill Steve Gale, a friend of a friend
on the internet, and a motorcyclist lies prone in
chunks of plastic as I pull over
for the ambulance.