O Derelict Days in That Derelict Town


sleepy town square w/ statue of yet / another / illegitimate
founding father / I’m smoking / with the boys / outside the pool hall

who am I / kidding? / I’m all alone / watching the deer lick
the shop windows / the glassy-eyed /  hunters sigh / heavily

in their / air-conditioned cars / the pigeons pick / daintily
at the sidewalk / they’re not from around here / brightly colored / bookish
 
with eager /  little eyes / the boy / in his coveralls
on a ladder / tinkers / with the town clock / his bicycle

is chained to one / of the three streetlamps / the kids / from the private school
tumble out / of the school bus / they look like gumballs / today

it rained / and steam rose / from the hot asphalt / and then vanished
like hope / lightning flashed / though far away / in a field

where a farmer / was pulling up / delinquent cotton plants / dusty
little store selling / hard candy / over-ripe fruit / peanuts

and glamour magazines / I think I’ll catch / a movie / one
where everyone / looks like they’re / in a war / but really they’re falling

in love / the squirrel comes by / like clockwork / I’ve fallen asleep
on the park bench / “You don’t belong here” / he says / “Yes

I know Mr. Squirrel / I know” / the sheriff is drunk again / he teeters
like a bowling pin / the postmaster / is locking up / the post office

he’s madly waving / his arms / the stamps have escaped / their cubby holes
and are flying / around behind  / the glass doors / and barred windows



“O Derelict Days in That Derelict Town” first appeared in december.