Monday, October 25, 2010

Three poems by Dennis Mahagin

Yellow For Dummies

"...all i need is your honest cooperation..."
A certain shade
conjures the worst
of first grade, hardly
luminescent, nor
soporific, yet
a canary? whole lemon
gone down the wrong
pipe, obscene nipple
where an avian Adam's
apple should be;

even flow, afterglow,
color of Heimlich cum
daiquiri, so pale it's
a fine line, you're not
supposed to

cross. Think
of a toucan, or albatross,
some pus rivulet, draining
from the scraped kneecap
of a post-pubescent
hellion, laid himself
wide open playing
Pogo Stick

on the cobblestones again;
or the nicotine-stained lips

of a pensioner,
without a friend
in the world, who bends,
sandy-haired, from the waist
to kiss the ice-cold stovetop
burners. When he's all
alone, those flame
fingerlings will have grown
just enough to sizzle
and hiss, to pull

down a home ... No,
you cannot dig it
via egg yolk, or icons.
No jaundice. No Crayola. Yet
a long sky streak at dawn, so
lovely it snatches
the breath, fades
the power to speak.
another pedestrian goes
down in a shriek of amber
brake fluid; the same
banana peel that caused
the pile up, makes one hell
of a poultice.
With the compassion
of every coward, kneel
down. Apply.

Be the dandelion
ahead of its time.


It's A Great Big
Water Foul World

Are you
really lonely
or only anthro-

Try to relax, see,
for a fact, how, say,
Compton (south central,
l.a.) is naught
but a honey
sweet home
to Pooh,
drive by

shooting bought
with mad love
care of

beaver tale
on loon lake (anthracite
custard glaze, beveled

with pop caps,
whisker twitch
and zippered
rivulet, milky-white
buck teeth floating
in silver constellations.

Christ, even
that half-crazy
station man
will affirm: it's a far off
clown horn
he keeps hearing, between
couplings; oh, you can bet
it keeps him
tossing, all

these blessed
as a bleeding
teardrop, what
I'm saying, now

be a dear;
step up

into my fog lights.

Man Child Spills BBQ On His DVD

I took a shot
of complacency, mixed it
with ambivalence, grated
on my last nerve,
then added a dash
of nostalgia
for the recent

I set it all down
on a stovetop burner
that I knew I'd forget.

When a tea pot
spits epithets like a mad
Julia child, will have found
me my level. I got to live
with that sound.

Author bio:

Dennis Mahagin's stories and poems have appeared in Exquisite Corpse, Juked, Word Riot, 42opus, 3 A.M., Storyglossia, Stirring, Thieves Jargon and Underground Voices, among other publications. His website can be found here:
Four Hour Hardon.

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