Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Hard Times by Amanda Phoenix

“In hard times, beauty can seem frivolous—but take it away and all you’re left with is hard times.” –Paul Madonna, Everything is Its Own Reward

gray matter mush, a heart attack
the older brother died at thirty-one
the younger one was picked up put away
his underpaid lawyer tired smiled patted shoulders
fifteen more months of under-seasoned “meat” –could be worse

salt water halo
i leave the door ajar while i sort refold repack the sweaters shirts jeans shorts
tags still attached until he gets back
a scavenger, i eat on food stamps and dig myself a sanctuary
in a compiled dust old junk grease stains house
spiders watch me shower

my saintly lover sighs and i apologize
we met at the start of shit falling apart
our summers bring bad drivers sweat cat hair everywhere
so, we take to the mountains
escaping the stink and thinking

for a week, climbing soggy cheese and trail mix
watching the kaleidoscope landscape crumble into night
he holds me steady, and i can breathe

Author bio:

Amanda “Cal” Phoenix is an undergraduate student at Washburn University, in Topeka, Kansas. She is a member of Sigma Tau Delta and has had work featured in Inscape and The Hobo Camp Review.

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