Thursday, February 25, 2016

Chris Fullerton

Tones of Home

A black-tongued boy eating dirt on the side
of the house with a plastic spoon from a yellow

metal dump truck, A yellow-haired girl standing
in the park beneath a gray sky with a broken kite 

dangling from a twisted dead oak tree, A graying
man leaning against the brick fa├žade of a downtown

building drinking two dollar wine from a bottle
in a brown paper bag, A brown-eyed saint, head

in hands, feet buried in the white sand of a beach
at dawn frigid from a February wind next to a smoldering

bonfire, A borrowed white car loaded down with black
garbage bags in the middle lane of an eastbound interstate,

They’ll say that they miss you,
but they never actually notice you
until you’re already gone.

* * *

Know Your Surroundings

There’s a barn behind
the new house
(not a barn, but a barn-like shed)
gray wood to match
the afternoon storms
empty, save for a stray
scorpion and a leftover
can of wood-stain.
just beyond,
a field of pine seedlings,
the cusp of sequestration,
silence permeates
the neighborhood
every third house
empty, a community
foreclosed and liquidated.

The plywood floor creaks
beneath my weight,
stepping carefully
like a trespasser,
imagining the possibilities
of creation
or destruction, planing
pine into a table
or a makeshift coffin,
was central Florida
ever the “new frontier”
more than it is
right now,
cloaked in loneliness
I feel limitless
as the afternoon rain
begins to fall.

* * *

Christopher Fullerton is a writer living with two friends, four dogs, and a tortoise in San Antonio, Texas, but he's still never been to the Alamo. He keeps forgetting.

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