Monday, July 10, 2017

Poems By David Spicer

David Spicer has had poems in Chiron Review, Poppy Road Review, Mocking Heart Review, Alcatraz, Gargoyle, Midnight Lane Boutique, American Poetry Review, Ploughshares, and elsewhere. The author of Everybody Has a Story and four chapbooks, he’s the former editor of raccoon, Outlaw, and Ion Books. He is scheduled to have a chapbook, Limbs From a Pear Tree (Flutter Press), released in the Fall of 2017.


Sonofabitch! That idiot dwarf
just called Christ a bully,
a psychopath, a monster!
I watched skinny Lala smash
Mick with a bottle bigger
than a baby, knock him
on the floor, unzip and slip
off his blue jeans, and throw
him naked out of The Lucky Ape.
We’ll put a dress on ya next time,
scumbag, so I’m warnin’ ya,
run like a mad squirrel
and don’t come back.
Mick shrugged, flashed two
middle fingers at Lala
and the rest of us staggered away,
drenched with cheap beer
from a deaf mute drunk wearing
a blue lily in his lapel. Lala,
a born-again, pimpled ballerina
wearing paper wings, plopped
back down, her long neck a wolf’s
desire, a magnet for bad boys.
Brushing them off, she sighed
like a teacher needing a shower.
The owner called her a demented
magnolia, but Lala said, Who gives
a fuck? At least I’m not a runt
drowning in booze and a loser
in the big bang department!


The Russian gypsy collected porcelain
ashtrays and counterfeit matchbooks.
I’m Tatiana, she proclaimed without
an accent, welcoming me into her
honeycomb of a home. Fifty to sixty,
she held out her slender handshake
adorned with rings. Where’s your husband?
I asked. In prison waiting for a reprieve.
Rum and coke? she asked. No thanks.
I’m just looking for the antidote to death,
and someone told me you possess it.
Hah! she said. You may as well celebrate
life, for death is a myth. That’s my antidote.
Forgive yourself and blame nobody.
I glimpsed around the small room:
tchotchkes and pictures on the bookshelves.
My boy. He’s a cadet at West Point,
studying for radar engineer. What do you
do? she asked. I’m a carpenter, I said.
Oh, same job as Jesus. Don’t worry
about death, son, wash your soul
every day, recognize and reflect upon your
sins. Then one night you’ll find love
at the Doppelgänger Hotel, where
you’ll meet your other you. Now, please
go, I have another client, and leave
your three Jacksons on the kitchen table.


I’ve craved bad girl Rhonda
much of my life, lingered
outside prison gates, longing
for the golden-haired felon
in a Panama hat who bragged
the Girl Scouts expelled her
for stealing a rhinestone uniform.
An usherette for the Malco,
she called men Sugar Pie
with a movie star smile and loved
the spotlight by belting out The Battle
Hymn and playing bluegrass
violin in the sunset symphony.
Rhonda raced a rusty black Studebaker
she carjacked—that impressed me—
from a speed demon and once wore
an organdy nightgown in a game
of beach volleyball with a fig in her
mouth. Oh, Rhonda, Tramp Duchess
refusing to loan me five bucks
for a protein bar and stranding
me in midnight mountains near
Tucson, come back, come back,
throw a malachite chess piece
this way as we lie on my brand
new shack’s rickety porch,
and I’ll undress past my
Ragged Andys, shed my virgin
skin: we’ll elbow each other
with kisses in tender, violent love
and then I’ll swig a shot of tequila
to toast you and your mother,t
he wild, cold moon.


Archduke, our albino landlord,
invited us to indulge in apricots
and hash in his pavilion.
Cadillac, the cockatoo, tiptoed
on the dandelion floor of his cage,
blurted at Mimi, my wife,
Harridan, harridan, get yourself
a better gigolo. Then he farted,
Archduke ignoring him.
Bare-chested, the albino sported
henna tattoos of twin teardrops
down his gaunt cheek
and gryphons above each nipple.
He needs a nanny, Archduke said,
sliding down the pavilion banister.
I might put a bonnet on his plume.
Cadillac squawked, He’s horny
as a housewife, has blackbirds
in his butt. We laughed, Archduke
straddling a saddle on a sawhorse.
So how ’bout rent? Archduke asked.
Bang a dong, screw a pincushion,
Cadillac interrupted. Can we haggle?
I asked. How ’bout we take Cadillac
off your hands? Not on your harridan’s
ass! the bird squealed. All right,
Archduke answered. Rent free for a year.

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