Saturday, March 9, 2013

Three Poems By Kevin Ridgeway

The great poetry keeps rolling in here at Zombie Logic Review. Here are three by Kevin Ridgeway.

Stoned in a New England Graveyard

The only thing lighting our way through the
wooded path are the old granite tombstones
their dusty ivory shining underneath the moon
I am following the girl with the coffeehouse
eyeglasses and the overcoat of fallen leaf murals
to a tall crucifix surrounded by dirty black
snow melting in the spring grass
we sit Indian style at its foot and she passes
the glass chillum to me; I light it and
watch the miniature forest of drugs burn
inside of it and cough violently into
my sweater; a trail of mucous attaches to
my hand and she laughs at me in my
embarrassment.  She smokes it like an
old pro and holds it in for a good amount
of time before letting it all seep out through
her tiny nostrils without a sound
she produces a tape player that slowly
cranks out a song by Steely Dan about
young girls, Elvis and tequila and before
I am able to formulate a response
she kisses me softly…my first kiss in
many years and says that she has
more Steely Dan, more weed, a book
of New England ghost stories and
a bottle of tequila back at her place
I turn up and Jesus looks at me from
the cross and I can swear I see him



when I was eight years old a Hollywood talent agent wanted
to sell me to the human meat factory where they shaped and
reconstructed my boyhood persona as a mediocre b-movie
version of the pint sized stars and starlets of the day

I landed a few gigs smiling and reading cue cards
over and over again in front of lights and a camera
and they showed my face on television in between
episodes of Cheers and Quantum Leap

I grew tired of acting and quit—
my thirty seconds of fame were over,
but the checks kept pouring in
to pay the junk food bills
and my perpetual
late adolescent prescription
drug fog

I was washed up, a soiled puppet without a hand up its ass
I spent the last of those movie land dollars on a psychiatrist
who hooked me up to a machine and
blasted my diseased personality with a series of
electric shocks to rid me
of any remaining


Roaring Twenties

As I say goodbye to my twenties,
I remember their events:

At 20, I got married and I got drunk
At 21, I got drunk, I got divorced and I got drunk
At 22, I got drunk and became a born-again-Christian
At 23, I got drunk and stopped being Christian, because
          I wasn’t fucking that Christian girl anymore
At 24, I dabbled in other drugs but gave them up
          to get drunk and I discovered that band
          that inspired me to grow a beard and
          get drunk
At 25, I stopped liking that band because they became
           so popular and synthetic, and shaved their beards;
           mine grew ratty and I got drunk
At 26, I wrote an epic poem about my drunken ills
           and published it myself via a vanity publishing site,
           no one read it, and I got drunk
At 27, I went to rehab, stopped getting drunk,
          started masturbating profusely and got fat
At 28, I got drunk again and stopped getting drunk,
           stayed fat and masturbated some more
At 29, I started getting drunk again and stopped getting
          drunk, and then I started writing this
At 30, To be continued…

BIO:  Kevin Ridgeway is from Southern California, where he resides in a shady bungalow with his girlfriend and their one-eyed cat.  Recent work has appeared or is forthcoming in Underground Voices, Gutter Eloquence Magazine, Bank-Heavy Press and Mad Rush.  A chapbook of his poetry, Burn Through Today, is available from Flutter Press; a second chapbook, All the Rage, is forthcoming from Electric Windmill Books.

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