Floating Ladders1
By Toren Wallace

1
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

2
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.

3
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

4
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!”

5
bobbing
for the absconding apple (Braeburn)
in the barrel of apathy blues
leaves me wet in the face.

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