Walk into the room
looking for a way to leave
My history was never as
violent as yours, but it’s not
like I’m going to apologize
Christ isn’t a solution,
look at it from every angle
Why would a man choose
to murder his own child?
How much sunlight can a
beautiful woman hold
in her cupped hands?
It’s not answers any of us
are after here, but praise.
The song of love
or something for all the murdered waitresses,
all the suicides and the missing ones,
all the kids they put up for adoption in the summer of ‘92
something for the streets that
end at graveyards
for the town that floods while we sleep and it’s
nice thinking I’ve escaped my past even
when the reality is always more complicated
it’s the last day of
whatever season my father died in
crows at the foot of every cross and
along the edges of the interstate and always the
shadows of collapsing barns
always blinding sunlight and the absence of heat
the names we forget and
the bodies we can’t seem to
the faces that are never happy to see us
voices that tell us to come in
but never anyone willing to offer us
something to stop the bleeding.
John sweet, b 1968, still numbered among the living. A believer in writing as catharsis. An optimistic pessimist. Opposed to all organized religion and political parties. Avoids zealots and social media whenever possible. His latest collections include APPROXIMATE WILDERNESS (2016 Flutter Press) and BASTARD FAITH (2017 Scars Publications). All pertinent facts about his life are buried somewhere in his writing.