Give me poems—
poems which speak to the heart
and not the head;
whose words roll from the tongue
like water over polished stone;
which say straight out
what they have to say;
whose truth does not lie buried
beneath endless layers
of meaningless metaphor;
poems unlike those
fawned over by the literary elite,
but leave me asking:
What fuckery is this?
Standing in the bathroom,
attempting to text
and pee at the same time,
I dropped my cell phone in the toilet.
In a flash, I saw the phone’s
micro-circuits signing off, one by one,
as I reached down and took hold of
the little urine-soaked rectangle.
after three days of silence,
no texts, no emails
no help from the ubiquitous Siri,
the phone still buried
in a bowl of Uncle Ben’s long-grain rice,
I wonder who, in truth, has been rescued—
the cell phone or me?
He was a bad kitty,
and did not care.
Dining according to the dictates
of his own finicky palate,
he turned up his nose
at all the rest.
Without warning, he would
bite the very hand which fed him,
if that hand strayed where
he deemed it should not be.
He shat and pissed and wiped his butt
wherever he chose—oriental rug,
litter box or easy chair,
they were all the same to him.
Clueless that he owed us anything,
he slept through the day curled in front
of the big glass door, twitching in the sunlight
as he dreamed his ephemeral, feline dreams.
For he was a bad kitty,
and did not care.
Howard Brown is a poet and writer who lives in Chattanooga, Tennessee on Lookout Mountain. His poetry has appeared in Old Hickory Review and Poetry Super Highway. In 2012, he published a book of poetry entitled “The Gossamer Nature of Random Things.” His poem “Pariah” placed first in the poetry division of the 2015 William Faulkner Literary Competition put on by Mississippi’s Tallahatchie Riverfest. He has published short fiction in Louisiana Literature, Extract(s), Gloom Cupboard, F**k Fiction, Crack the Spine, Pulpwood Fiction and Mad Hatter Review (forthcoming).