Two Poems by Justin Hyde

that summer

we’d cut the top off a pop-can

one of us would steal a little gasoline
from our father

out on the west edge of the trailer park
tucked up under the highway overpass
like hobos

we’d drop one of our
g.i. joes in the
gasoline bath with
a lit-match

silent full
attention

swirling the acrid burning fumes
with wooden sticks

squatting there
that last summer before our dicks got hard

women came

simple truth disappeared

& we turned inscrutable

like our fathers.

____________

 

four years in

i think
you need
a different kind of man,
i told her
as we sat in front of the camp-fire
seven
gin & tonics long

this was
mostly true
& generally desiccated
defeat
masquerading as pity

she flung her gin & tonic
in my face

slapped me
off the back
of my chair

i popped up

began vivisecting her
all over
the campground

she got away
long enough to call her parents
two & a half hours away

they showed up
with the sheriff
in & out
like a pogo stick

i fell asleep
on the grass
in front of the camper

a vineyard of
heaven & hell
wrapping my body
like a toga

in the morning
a hundred flowers

began to bloom
& rust.

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