The Five Senses

Floating Ladders1
By Toren Wallace

i am a ball joint
in a recording device (Olympus VN-3100)
that sits on a desk
during an interview
between a court ordered psychologist
and a crippled wolf

somewhere in a sloven motel room
a graying John
pees on his rent-boy and calmly relates,

“Smokey Robinson wrote, ‘Who’s Lovin’
You,’ before Michael was fucking born, asshole.”

this is someone’s son.

As you get older
there is a greater chance shingles
can happen to you

is the catch phrase from a brochure
at the doctor’s office
next to a graphic novella
about suicide starring Billy Happenstance
going out with a bang.

there’s a greater chance just about anything
can happen to you
the older you get

the baby sleeps on a pompadour of secrets

while my visage builds to a roar
at the four year old:

“in life, you can’t always have the crust cut off!
Sometimes chunky peanut butter just has to work!
I’m sorry boysenberry isn’t your favorite,
toughen up!”

for the absconding apple (Braeburn)
in the barrel of apathy blues
leaves me wet in the face.

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