Default

I take my time on things
much like a default.
The dogs behind me
bite my heels and bleed them
like I’ve never seen them go.
The working men and women
live in flashbacks that appear
while they do almost anything
to move time along,
so they can have an evening
for themselves.
I see them heat their soup cans
on tinfoil stretched over
a flame they built from whatever
they could find laying around.

The town itself has a dementia
in its cinder blocks,
and no matter how much
it snows the praying mantises
hang on to what they fought for
in the spring time
when the women watched them
struggle with the flowers.
If I could meet you I would hesitate
to make eye contact, and probably
just focus on your fingernails.

The slugs get drunk on backyard beer
until their heads explode without
the slightest fire. A young couple shaves ice
off of their car doors so they can drive
somewhere and kiss without
the questions.
They find them chopped like firewood
left out to just get rained on,
fucking useless.
I guess the closing stores are really gone
forever and the caravans of people
leaving everything behind
don’t read the messages
painted messily over the mile markers.

The oldest one read simply that;
no matter where you go
you’ll be the same.

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