Savagery

There are all these people with so much going on.

The fat lady coming out of the gas station in her Ford Explorer

with three kids in the back,

smoking a Pall Mall and I’m like, Lady,

slow down

but maybe she is slowed down and what the hell do I know?

There’s the guy mowing his lawn across the street

who I had no idea, until the other day,

was a cop

and busted gang leaders in Brighton

for selling hookers and crack

to Saudis across the sea.

For all this time I thought he was just a guy

with an Asian wife

who loved his rhododendrons

and had no kids.

All these people and I should watch my mind

the way you should watch your mind

when you see me pick up my kid around the belly

and drag her upstairs

because she lied about the cookies and the tomatoes on the wall

and the sadness in my heart.

What do you know?

Do you know the sadness in my heart?

What do I know?

Do I know the sadness in your heart?

We don’t and that is why I have to be careful

when the mailman tosses my mail across the front steps

because earlier his big brother was diagnosed

with a rare form of cancer.

It’s a special place this planet

with all of its high power lines and cell towers.

It’s a godly visitation of blueness

that we might have turned rust color.

On my way to the Roche Brothers for some kosher beef salami

I see:

two kids on skateboards,

bi-racial gay couple,

haircutter from Iran,

the Italian cook and his sweaty bride.

We don’t know till we know

and even then we don’t know.

So, what do we know?

The only thing I know is that there are all these people

and so many more people

and people at the beach,

thousands of them in their beach chairs,

inside their sun screen and buckets of watermelon

and beer

and it boggles my mind

that we are all here, together,

without doing more damage.

It blows the back of my hair apart

and turns my eyes into widening spheres of animal

to the point where I go to my fried chicken store

and devour my chicken

then pass out in the grass

with the lions and cheetahs and bears,

all bloody and spitty and, for the moment,

perfectly at peace.