February 27, 2009

takes all kinds

by Justin Hyde

hey man
what time it says,
said the young kid
bloodshot eyes
nose to the screen
of his cellphone.

3:29 am,
i told him.

shit john
we might as well
stay up
gotta be at work
be seven,
he slurred
to his redheaded friend
in front of me
in line
at the quickie-mart.

bought a
3-foot stick of beef jerky
and a two-litter of mountain dew,
then they asked
if i wanted to
go to a party.

told them
i had to go see a man about a dog
but i'd take a rain check.

takes all kinds,
said the clerk
as he rung up my newspaper
and we watched them
stumble into a
blue rusted s-10.

think we should
call the cops?
i asked the clerk.

can't be your
brother's keeper,
he said.

i suppose not,
i said
and walked out
paper under my arm

just in time to watch them
carry far too much speed out of the lot.

they hit the apex wide

up and over the lip of the curve:

nose to ass
like a tomahawk
into the base of a telephone pole.


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