Photo by Sebastian Palomino from Pexels

driving, approaching lost

monday afternoon
thinking about hemingway’s
cure for cancer

thinking about a man
who has written to tell me
that i’m the greatest poet alive

about another who says
what you’ve sent was well-written but
i would hesitate to call it
poetry

and i am somewhere on 38 south
beneath a brutal blue sky
with my wife and son asleep in
the back seat

with the need to be understood
nowhere near as important as the need
to get home

and what i’ve learned after two days
in the presence of the dying man
is to fear my own mortality

what matters aren’t the words but
the ideas that draw power from them

what matters is motion

the speed at which thought
leads to thought
and the absolute simplicity of
certain death

understand

anyone can kick bukowski’s corpse

everyone
at some point
is the god of starving dogs

what does it take to push
a seventeen year-old girl to
the point of suicide?

somewhere in my past is a man
who know the answer

i have spent his money
on the people i love and what this
makes me is everything
i despise

what i’m talking about
are anger and greed reduced to
mathematical equations

the sum total of hatred war
and starvation

everything that matters to me
held inside this thin skin of
metal and glass
on a monday afternoon

the world flat in all directions





John Sweet sends greetings from the rural wastelands of upstate NY. He is a firm believer in writing as catharsis, and in the continuous search for an unattainable and constantly evolving absolute truth. His latest poetry collections include HEATHEN TONGUE (2018 Kendra Steiner Editions) and BASTARD FAITH (2017 Scars Publications).

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