Cool Knives

Sporadic trees grow between houses,
and on the roadside, mostly just making
shade and shelter for the birds.
Kids climb them sometimes, and usually
they fall, but it’s never bad enough to
warrant stopping it.
Their mothers drink lemonade with small
portions of vodka mixed in and watch them
carefully through that small gap above their

There’s a billboard advertising a rental place
for mostly landscaping equipment, at the
edge of the neighborhood, and it’s there
that the teenagers make their plots.
They compare the coolness of their
recently bought knives they had shipped
to them from far away, and debate whose
tires they should slash open.

There’s a woman in a van watching
them from the other side of the highway,
and the drink in her hand was much more vodka
than lemonade.
She called out to them and asked if they needed a ride
somewhere, and at first they didn’t say a word,
but after a few seconds the bravest among them
spoke up, and claimed he was up for anything.

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