Winter – Mountain Time Zone

The cold pushed Lori indoors.
There was enough hot chocolate to last until spring.

There was no one genre that would carry her through.
She required folk as well as rock ’n roll.

Jazz and blues. And several centuries
of classical and early music.

She listened to music when she was not asleep
or napping after a carb-heavy lunch.

Her only exercise was on her rowing machine
that lasted as long as The Beat With Ari Melber.

Jennifer called once a week during the three o’clock hour
and left cryptic messages about her therapy.

Lori kept geopolitics in her dream journal
ranked the world’s problems

and used Maslow’s hierarchy of needs
to predict where gunfire was most likely to take place.

In a nap’s dream after a bag of chips and a jar of salsa
she pin-dropped each conflagration prediction

with eighty-two percent accuracy
and was tendered a contract from the State Department.

copyright © 2023 Kenneth P. Gurney

Take Me Out

When people yell at me
their words turn yellow—
a pained shade not close to Midas-gold.

This is the America that celebrated napalm.
I see it burn in the digital afterglow
of online gun sales.

When it exits a wound
blood becomes far more real
than feelings expressed in therapy.

I think of the neighborhood musicians
who somehow create new cords
out of gang violence.

A rat-ta-tat-tat rhythm
to full- and semi-automatic assault weapons
secondarily directed at smart phone documentarians.

I see the fresh dirt in the churchyard cemetery.
It is thick with worms
hungry for pinkish lungs clutching the last breath.

copyright © 2022 Kenneth P. Gurney