UNDERGROUND VOICES: POETRY
D.B.COX

nightwatch

in the gentleman’s
john—defunct exxon
hiding
out-of-luck eyes
hard as roman nails
bony back
to the wall
dead man
laughing
at nothing at all
shaky tones
falling
into a full-blown
smoker’s hack
bell-cracked
saxophone
rattling ‘round
the unholy sanctuary
top floor of hell
holding cell that smells
like a dress rehearsal
for the cemetery


dust-off

clean-collar commuters
peer from the cover
of stylish shades
taking secret comfort
in a pathetic apparition
wrapped
in an army overcoat
face down
in a pool of piss
baptized
purified
crucified
in the mute humility
of his own guilt
while inside crusty
rust-filled ears
distant city traffic
hums like a “huey”—
spectral medevac
searching for a soul
lost forty years ago
somewhere along
the mekong river


another good man done gone

“You may bury my body
down by the highway side
So my old evil spirit
can catch a Greyhound bus and ride”
–Me & The Devil Blues by Robert Johnson

spent ashes fall
from a neglected
cigarette jammed
between metal strings
running over
the headstock
of a pawn shop guitar
like blue veins
leading to the heart
of the matter
open chords stumble
& stagger
behind jagged
bottleneck moans
sliding along
a juke-joint floor
aching phrases
that fill vacant
outlines
of ghost notes
waiting to be played
sweat-stained
ebony face
wailing a song
about a hound
from hell
when suddenly
the music stops—
& Robert Johnson
drops to his knees
ribs heaving
bleeding
from the nose
liver on fire
clawing
at his gut
half-dead eyes
rolling back
in his head
mind running
down highway 61
recalling
dark deals done
where a twisted
tree grows
& two empty roads
cross in the night


D.B. Cox is a blues musician/poet, originally from South Carolina. After
graduating from high school in 1966, he did a four year stint with the U.S.
Marines, then moved to Boston to attend the Berklee School of Music, where
he eventually found the blues circuit. He loves writing for the same reason
he loves playing the guitar-a way to communicate how he feels at a given time,
on a given day. He now resides in Watertown, Massachusetts. His writing has
been published online in Zygote In My Coffee, Remark, Underground Voices,
Dubliner Quarterly and others, and in print in Aesthetica, Snow Monkey, My
Favorite Bullet and Open Wide Magazine.







© 2007 Underground Voices