TEN POEMS by MARCUS SLEASE

WARRIOR OF LIGHT

Chinese stars in my sleeve. Nunchucks in my backpack. I want to shoot fire from my fingers and become invisible. In America they show me hot dogs. Good hot dogs turn the bun pink. In American they show me baseball. The ball slaps the leather. I like the sound but not the action. In America they show me trucks. Old trucks are curvier than new trucks. Five-Alive in mother’s basement. Plastic gold sunglasses for the sun. I am a warrior of light.

 

 

 

 

 

DEAD STAR SLOP JAR

 

I keep adjusting the tongue of my shoe. The tongue of my shoe sez Camper. To camp among the stars with a little tent in the wilderness. The dead light of the heavens with no gods of goblins for pleasure. The liquid in my body turns to glass then shatters inside. A packet of chocolate buttons in my pocket. Lodestone versus touchstone. Pebbles transmigrate under the soles of my shoes. Shredded wheat floats in milk but the sugar sinks to the bottom.

 

 

 

 

 

GOLD CHAINS AND FRENCH KISSING

 

At the top of the street a crack house. At the bottom of the street a crack house. Around the corner a crack house. Outside scraps for air conditioners. Inside screaming children. Father wanted chickens. There is no room for chickens said mother. Father wanted a horse. There is no room for a horse said mother. Woody woodpecker with chocolate donuts for breakfast. A cracker with jam for lunch. On Sundays sweet pickles. Liver and onions. Bubble and squeak. Champed potatoes. At the top of street a school bus stuffed with itchy jumpers. At the bottom of the street tinted windows. Barred windows. Cracked windows. At the dusty park a jungle jim with monkey bars. See-saws. Gold chains and French kissing.

 

 

 

 

 

SWOOP

 

They landed in Vegas with a little blue parachute. A retro heart space of one armed bandits and smoky red carpets. Buffet lines. Dust devils. German edelweiss hidden in bibles. The high school full of metal detectors and snipers. They drank rye whiskey in parked cars and slept in the rolling green parks of the homeless. Little blue drinks from the dews of the mountains. Little blue eyeshadow and short stockings. The lovely weather inside the skullhouse welcomed them for breakfast.

 

 

 

 

 

SPRING FEVER

 

My friend my breast bones crack. My neck creaks. A living skeleton. And more. Mahou red beer on bird shit benches. Fingers cold. Stomach sour. Every morning of the world. Resurrection or rolling rock forever.

 

 

 

 

 

OLD SHOES WITH GOOD TIMES IN THEM

 

A stunned German cockroach glides across my desk. A fly rubs its body on the window. The black mold is climbing the walls. Buns and bones in wooden shack. The hacking coughs of winter bang against the shutters. A shaded cave. Bells of a distant watch. Warm baton of bread in the park. Big blue sky before me. Nothing more to wish for. My white teeth are numbered.

 

 

 

 

 

TIGHT SQUEEZE

 

Dead fish on ice. At the neck of the lobster a giant soap bubble. She points to the flat fish. He scrapes the scales & points to the head. No she says. Sin cabeza. He deposits the head in the rubbish. There are many heads. It is a tight squeeze. He wraps the fish in plastic. And then more plastic. It is a tight squeeze. She heads to the counter. It is rush hour. No one has on their turn signals. It is a tight squeeze. She places the fish in the tiny oven. It is a tight squeeze. She moves sideways through the kitchen. It is a Spanish kitchen. There is only supposed to be one person in the kitchen. That one person is supposed to be very small. She is not small enough. It is a tight squeeze.

 

 

 

 

 

SWEATBOX

 

A long thin human is smoking a long thin cigarette. They think about thin. Thin mints. Thin trousers. Ghost thin humans smoking ghost thin cigarettes. Do they want to feel thin? And also thinner? They buy long thin white cigarettes and feel thinner. They disappear very quickly. One day they wake up craving a thick. Plugged with a yellow cork. Where does it come from? They smoke five thicks. They think about thin. They walk the dark tunnels toward the sweatboxes.

 

 

 

 

 

FIG LEAVES

 

We come in peace, they said. Welcome to the revolution. Some people had gathered in the medieval square. Others were hiding behind their red curtains in cold brick houses. He stepped forward & crawled around on the grass. A soft and silky blanket. Euphoria, he said. A woman stepped forward. She slicked back her hair while doing a snake dance. The aliens are coming she said. Suddenly they were all naked. They were a naked colony. Where are the fig leaves he said. There are no fig leaves she said.

 

 

 

 

 

FAIRY

 

He went to the kitchen. The drain was blocked for the 223rd time. Onions and yellow curry. She rinsed them with fairy. You only need a small squeeze for a whole pile of dishes. Do not waste the fairy he said. There is plenty of fairy she said. The fairy is almost gone he said. It is only half gone she said. There are only a few squeezes left he said. There are many squeezes left she said. I want to waste the fairy she said.

 

 

 

 

 

Marcus Slease is from Portadown, N. Ireland and Utah. He lives in Madrid and teaches English as a foreign language. His book, Play Yr Kardz Right, is forthcoming from Dostoyevsky Wannabe in August 2017. Come share on Instagram: jjmars24 and maybe Twitter: @postpran