The Blowdown

It’s hard to imagine a day
When I’m not scratching
My nuts right at God.

Everyone I love shuffles
Toward the sun & I am
Measuring my chewed

Off fingernails into this
Here bucket. Always a bit
More. Always too much.

So supersonic goes a blur
In the sky & the sweet peas
Shudder. So I’m head to

Head with all of today’s
Ghosts. I stare from
The shadows when the dragsters

Burn by. Rims gleaming like spit
Dangling from the baby’s mouth.
I know you dream of saving me,

As if I were some kind of Chilean
Miner. But my genome is half skink
& I mostly foam at the mouth.

I might say get me out of this hole
But what I mean is I don’t want to be
Trapped up there with all of you.

Watch—each time I put
My foot down, my arms
Raise into the air. Land

That jet. Score a touchdown.
I’ve been told hundreds of times
That I’m a really good hider

When I’m wearing your clothes—
Short black skirt, the pill-box
Hat. But the word on the street

Is that I taste like intensive
Care. So now, I’m preparing
For the deep sleep by snorting

Pepper flakes & slapping
My chest like an Olympic
Swimmer. In whatever time

I have left, I’m going to be
The best disaster I can be.
Crunches. Pull-ups. Protein

Bars. Arms outstretched,
I’m sprinting at you
Like the Hindenburg.

Front page image by llimllib

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Alex Lemon

About the Author

Alex Lemon is the author of Happy: A Memoir, and the poetry collections Mosquito, Hallelujah Blackout and Fancy Beasts. A book of essays and a new poetry collection are forthcoming from Milkweed Editions. His writing has appeared in Esquire, The Huffington Post, Best American Poetry 2008, Satellite Convulsions, Tin House, Kenyon Review, AGNI, The Southern Review and jubilat, among others. Among his awards are a 2005 Literature Fellowship in Poetry from the National Endowment for the Arts and a 2006 Minnesota Arts Board Grant. He is a frequent book reviewer for the Dallas Morning News. He lives in Ft. Worth, Texas, and teaches at TCU. He is and tweets as @Alxlemon.
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