13 September 2004

napo #18 -- Linda Gregerson

after "Pass Over" by Linda Gregerson:

Ill Chosen

                  1. Plague of Jokers

You make a smart face at a cop, the cop
                  will think
         you’re bad, he said. No matter thugs

down the road are fleeing, Shooter’s
         the back of the van such a pack

of procurers and half-dressed whores they’ll
                  no doubt
         rip your nuts right off. You know

what the sargeant said through the mesh?
                  More coming.
         Ten people jammed back here, whiskey breath

where it’s not fresh vomit. They shuffle
                  up tighter
         cause at least it’s not cold inside

like flat on a park bench under newsprint
                  or boxed
         in cardboard next to a wall. The cop

is fat, the face convinced him you mocked him, and
                  he thinks
         you’re one of the johns. Say your prayers.

If anyone might have saved you, my guess is that pimp’s
                  a mile away.

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