Middle Class Tough


Watch the suburban yakuza

with sleeve tattoos




on skin


like the thoughts

of a confused person.

He is a dangerous

edgy man

an assistant manager

at a bank

trying to start his lawn mower

pulling the starter cord

over and over.

He grunts

thick calves tense.

A Viking rows his long ship

braving an unknown ocean.


It will take another fifteen minutes

for him to realize

the gas tank is empty.



Penn Station Creep



He sits on a bench

waiting for his train

shaved head

black t-shirt

tribal tattoo

encircling an unimpressive bicep

leans back

hands folded in his lap.


He clicks

the stainless steel ball

of his tongue ring

against the edge

of his front teeth

letting all the passing ladies know

he can please them

but only with assistance.


Sorry Glen Miller



If I could go back in time

to early 1939

I’d find Glen Miller

just before he started writing

In the Mood

tell him it was nothing personal

and put a .38 slug

through the knot in his necktie.


I could not explain

how this song

will cause me decades of pain:

the cheesy wedding conga lines

listening to reminiscing grannies

with tennis ball tipped walkers

la la laing out of tune

with the trumpets and saxophones.


After I was done,

I’d find a bored housewife

named Ethel or Hazel

buy a couple bottles of Schlitz

and do things to her

under that apple tree

her vacuum salesman husband

could never imagine.














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