I thought I had scurvy,
turns out, I had bad oral hygiene.
I went to a psychic fair,
paid fifty bucks for a spirit animal
I could have gotten from any carny
for twenty dollars in darts and balloons.
I bought a shave and a haircut on my birthday.
I was twenty five and learned Capone had big eyes,
playboys never fade, and I had an irrational fear
of warm wet towels and strops.
I stepped out, proud and smooth, looking like Al Pacino
on a bad day.
I walked into a church and proclaimed myself Jesus,
I was looking that good — that day — O! Mary of the Lake!
I pissed on a ceiling in Valparaiso, young and Ahab.
I spat on my dad.
I danced with a Hoover,
a gift from my mother,
the only thing I’d need, she said.
I still wonder which — foxtrot or carpet?
I left black heel marks on new white floors,
dragged my feet.
I slouched cool, vague and hidden,
became smaller than minds.
The internal combustion engine,
though a closed system, still burns oil,
throws a rod.
I walked ten miles in the rain, once,
to tell my mother her new used car was dead —
I forged all the receipts.
When I took out my eyes,
there was sunshine and old gravy.