The prodigal son goes to the disco by Roy Beckemeyer

all blurry-eyed, Quaalude-floppy legs,
“That’s the way I like it!” she chants,
pulls him over, crumples his polyester
jacket, pats his breast pocket for a packet
of pills, a roll of bills, crooks a finger
through his gold chain, leads him
out onto the floor, the mirrored shards
pimping out flashes of color, the bass
ringing in his ears. Hell, he hasn’t seen
daylight much less sunlight for weeks,
his half of his old man’s fortune down,
now, to small bills and coins.

The blonde’s interest is already
drifting off toward another pimply-
faced kid fresh off the caravan from
the Negev. She turns to the girl child
she’s training up, says “Don’t feel bad,
for him, my pomegranate, my hennaed
ewe, it’s the sons those old bastards
always welcome back with open arms.
It’s their damn sons that they forgive.”


“The prodigal son…” first appeared in Prompts: A Spontaneous Anthology, Jeanette Powers and J. D. Tulloch (Editors), 2016, 39West Press, KC, MO.


Roy Beckemeyer, from Wichita Kansas, has been plugging away at poetry for 60 years.

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