Baseball Bats and Cigarettes

The two-car dungeon is dark
and the poltergeist beams of
television transport weary grain
images of gangland men
in twenty first century
Iowa corn fields with
aluminum bats bashing in
the skulls
of wayward wise guys
brain matter dancing everywhere
mean debris
childish tears drain from
the nearly wet brain
of this
bourbon soaked

Turn the television off
and be gone with these brutes
and alone with brutish exhalations
the room is pitch black
save for
one large swath of sun
across the south wall
hosting shadow men
swinging bats
wavy minds shattering behind
the smoke of many cigarettes
the blood spattering all over
as shock and awe
hemorrhage from
all vile organs

Vacation in a Western City

on the poisoned end of the city
where the spiritual tumors
slowly melt beneath the sun
shopping cart homes
being pushed along the boulevard
the sidewalks with its petals of glass shards
the view from the hotel window
is a junkyard with wild dogs

sinking bottled ships in the bathtub
surrounded by
Styrofoam takeout containers
hosting a flurry of red ants
temples throbbing
as housekeeping bumps
the vibrating walls with roaring vacuums
churning this buttered hangover

Staggering from the
Vacationland liquor store
passed the hypodermic needles
floating in stagnant waters
sipped at by plagues of night flies
and drift back into the pine fresh maze
of empty hotel halls

Will all cities
look like this
post apocalypse
or is it just nestled within
an imagination
turning with violent
sparks of paranoia
in desperate need of
a vacation of its own

Truck Drivers and Drop Outs

Pump a fist
and hear those mighty whistles blow
these back roads
where we all caravan on
that hedonistic road
to air-worn glory

In this shit box dodge
sandwiched between
two rigs
blasting mix tapes
of mom and dadís
greatest hits
headed no where
toward the lonesome
desert terrain
that used to baffle us
from those bleeding gut
Peckinpah westerns

The gnarled demonic spirits
are soaring
weíre not alone with our
pills and our water bottle wine
please truckers donít fall asleep
at the wheel and turn us to mulch

We have things to do
back home
when our minds clear

Kevin Ridgeway is a writer currently based in Southern California. Recent work has appeared in Gloom Cupboard, Side B Magazine, Red Fez, Quantum Poetry Magazine, Haggard & Halloo and The Legendary.

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