Archive for the Matt Borczon Category

Matt Borczon

Posted in Matt Borczon with tags on December 5, 2022 by Scot




Matt Borczon — Three Poems

Posted in Matt Borczon with tags on June 13, 2022 by Scot




Some people
have eyes
like prophets
like they
know more
than the
rest of us
and some
people have
eyes like
burglars always
looking for
open windows
and some
people have
eyes like
the movies
telling stories
to teach
and entertain
and some
people have
eyes like
a hurricane
calm as
everything around
them is
and some
people have
eyes like
broken headlights
like shiny
stars like
spilled milk
like a
candle flame
or a
cherry bomb
a silver
bullet a
wooden cross
a broken
rosary a
crooked highway
or a
hundred howling



The difference

was that
I was
45 in
too old
for everything
I saw
and did
while the
soldiers around
me went
from 18
to 29
and I
think maybe
it was
because their
already has
an expiration
date on
that nothing
is built
to last

while I
was taught
not to
waste anything
and not
expect that
things would
just stop
working one
day just
up and die

so I
took everything
the war
gave me
home and
parked it
like a
good used
car in
my garage

a car
I drive
a little
farther in
to hell
every day.



Less like me

In nightmares
I have
soldiers with
the faces
of my
more times
then I
can count

but the
rest of
it gets
lost in
the small
details tiny
things like
the smell
of bleach
and blood
the feeling
of sand
on bare
feet the
sound of
a truck

all of
it a
that I
came back
a lot
more like
the war
and a
lot less
like me.


Matt Borczon

Posted in Matt Borczon with tags on February 7, 2022 by Scot


Out there

Somewhere tonight
a young boy
parks beside
the airport
and points
a gun at
his head
for the plane
to take off
to muffle
the sound

somewhere tonight
an 80 year
old man is
tired of
being on oxygen
24 hours
a day
so he takes
it off and
dies in his sleep
the only explanation
is how carefully
he wrapped
the tubing
when he
put the
on his porch

somewhere tonight
a Brazilian
college student
plays at parkour
after smoking
out the window
of his hotel
his fall becomes
a thousand questions
asked between
his friends and
family long after
the memorial service

somewhere tonight
a young mother
decides she will
leave her children
behind rather
then spend one
more night with
that man and
those kids will
eat blame like
breakfast cereal
for the rest of
their lives

and somewhere
tonight on
nationwide TV
someone asks
the actor
Keanu Reeves
what happens
when we die

and he says
all I know
for sure is
the people
who love us
will really
miss us.


I only ever travelled in the military

So I
can’t tell you
if that mountain
behind Bastion
Hospital had
hiking trails
or tell you
anything about
the local

and all
I can tell
you about
Kuwait was
that in a
gym watching
a huge screen
tv I heard
Pink sing
a song to
her daughter
that made me
miss my kids
so much I
started to
ugly cry

and about
fifty American
soldiers noticed
but nobody
said a word
because they
all knew
exactly how
I felt.

Matt Borczon

Posted in Matt Borczon with tags on August 25, 2021 by Scot



What did you do in the war daddy? #1


I helped
ship dead
Soldiers and
Marines back
to the
states and
tried to
forget their
cold cold
eyes enough
to sleep.



What did you do in the war daddy #2


I took
a scalpel
from the
to my
tent I
told people
I wanted
to use
it to
whittle but
mostly I
just cut
to make
sure I
could still



What did you do in the war daddy#3


I took
the amputated
body parts
of soldiers
down to
the burn
pits to
be destroyed
along with
all the
bloody uniforms
used gauze
and human




What did you do in the war daddy#4


We showered
in metal
stalls that
held the
118 degree
heat like
it was
bus money
I would
get out
of a
cold shower
sweaty and
happy that
at least
the blood
was off
my skin

Three Poems by Matt Borczon

Posted in Matt Borczon with tags on January 16, 2021 by Scot

Selected power house poems from Matt Borczon’s soon to be released book Saved Rounds from Spartan Press


What we teach

When I
was in
my daughter
was two
so when
I would
skype with
my wife
and her
she would
ask me
come home
and cry
because she
didn’t understand
how far
away the
war was
now she
is twelve
and some
nights she
breaks her
scotch tape
dispenser and
cuts herself
with the
jagged end
on her
thighs long
thin lines
like notebook
paper and
when I
ask her
why she
swears she
doesn’t know
but her
therapist said
it started
when I
deployed earlier
this year
to NYC
for the
pandemic I
was working
in a
the therapist
said my
daughter told
her that
all she
from my
last deployment
was how
angry she
was that
I would
not come
back to
her and
maybe she
is still
angry that
I left
but being
my daughter
she won’t
blame me
and she
is still
too young
to blame
the war
or the
Navy or
the virus
so instead
she writes
angry letters
blaming herself
into her
skin with
anything sharp
she can


Every couple days

My mom
calls and
asks me
to buy
her a
bottle and
pick up
her mail
she has
drank every
day since
my father
died she
is trying
to forget
him and
the feeling
of being
alone that
even four
kids can’t
fill and
I think
we are
all doing
this in
my family
but my
father’s ghost
is thirsty
and the
more I
drink the
louder he
gets but
I buy
my mom
the cheap
she likes
now because
she says
it feels
like it
is killing
her faster
and some
nights I
cry as
I try
to imagine
what it
will feel
like down
the road
with both
of them



was 14
and skipping
school the
day some
crazy lady
took 3
shots at
him from
a hunting
pistol on
west 8th
street he
dove behind
a tree
and was
there for
25 minutes
until the
police rushed
her third
floor apartment
and she
put the
gun in
her mouth
and took
the shot
she could
not miss
and Stanley
went home
and never
said a
word to
anyone about
it and
now 42
years later
he eats
like M and M’s
has been
divorced 3
times and
shows up
uninvited to
his daughters
job at
the Mall
like the
ghost of
Christmas yet
to come
he has
a new
woman in
his bed
usually before
the last
one has
gone and
he can
write a
poem that
can make
a grown
man cry
and he
still says
he never
wants to
own more
than he
can fit
into the
backseat of
his car
and I
think that
he is
like this
he was
20 years
too young
when he
learned that
time is
an illusion
and nothing
last forever
so he
has spent
his whole
life running
as hard
as he
possibly can
with no
idea where
he was
to go
because nobody
is ready
to be
that grown
up at

Two Poems by Matt Borczon

Posted in Matt Borczon with tags on August 11, 2020 by Scot

As a kid

I walked
past a
dead animal
I would
hold my
breath and
walk fast
to keep
death out
of my

I still
do this
it’s a
reflex or
I am
trying to
hold it
in now

ten years
of carrying
the ghosts
of Marines
and Afghan
fighters of
dead children
caught in
the crossfire

makes me
think that
people should
hold their
breath and
walk quickly
past me
any time
I cross
their path.


I identify


with my
kids at
the eye
watching a
spider crawl
across the
floor when
my daughter
jumps up
walks over
and stomps
the spider
with her
foot I
look at
her and
say I
was just
going to
let it
go by but
my daughter
says it
is a spider
I can’t
do it

and I
about what
I still
need to
teach her
about respect
for life
in all
it’s forms
when I
don’t say

I think
life is
easy at
12 you
know you
aren’t a
spider that
you are
more important
than any
bug and

I don’t
want to
tell her
that I
know how
it feels
to just
want to
go by
Un noticed
and what
it feels
like to
get stepped

I don’t
tell her
that because
I know
life will
over and
over again
soon enough.

Two Poems by Matt Borczon

Posted in Matt Borczon with tags on June 20, 2020 by Scot


My orders
were written
and all
the gear
I need
is in a
duffle bag
by my
door I
will fly
to Philly
bus to
Fort Dix
and work
in a
in NYC
while I
am there
who knows
what I
will do
treat the
sick and
pray for
the souls
of the
dead and
about 100
years from
now when
all this
is just
a fairytale
about death
a person
who takes
the form
of a
bat to
fly across
the world
killing everyone
the next
story of
the witch
that eats




For 2
weeks I
watch a
crew build
a parking
ramp outside
a hotel
room I
am not
to leave

and I
think it
is good
that someone
is building
because after
deployments to
in2010 and
New York
on 2020

I need
to see
come up
from the
ground instead
of the
other way

Two Poems by Matt Borczon

Posted in Matt Borczon on January 30, 2018 by Scot

Harry Houdini

once escaped
from the
belly of
an octopus
he was
the first
to fly
a plane
over Australia
and would
escape from
any box
or strait jacket
hand cuffs
or cage
sight unseen

so when
I was
shy and
unable to
fit in
too small
for football
and bullied
for my
long hair
and unpopular
taste in music
I carried
his biography
with me
daily like
a bible

proof you
could escape
if you
really really


Band reunion

I will
bring the
ghosts from
the last
war you guys
bring the
and grown
the lesbian
affairs and
Brent can
bring the
ashes of
his dead
ex wife
and we
can all
plug in
and play
on heavens
door and
mean it
like we
never could
at nineteen