Green Hills Literary Lantern

 

 

Dunsville is Hiring

 

Carl walks into the factory;

spent the last 25 years in this place,

hating the long hours and the fact

that Sue left him for Jim – the jerk

who worked at the other plant

across town – said he made better

money and worked less hours.

 

Carl tells Pete – his hated boss –

to take this job and shove it;

straight out the mouth of Johnny

Paycheck. He clocks out, tells him

to just mail his last check.

 

Carl spends the night at The Ark,

telling everyone within earshot –

and some not even close –

how he told that SOB off, and how

much better life will be without

that hellhole to go to every day.

Yeah, it sucks to have no income,

but he’ll find something.

After all, he has tons of experience,

and he heard that the plant in

Dunsville is hiring for second shift.

 

A few months later, Carl sits in The Ark,

ordering shots of Jack backed with beer.

He’s not all that loud; in fact, he’s pretty

subdued on his barstool. He peels off a

couple pickle cards, cursing each one.

No job yet, but it hasn’t been that long;

unemployment will kick in soon. He gets up,

plays a few songs on the jukebox, turns

just in time to see Sue walk in with Jim.

 

 

Long Overdue

 

Blue sky crowns

Milkweed afternoons

I pause for you to catch up

Run with me through

The old days

When midnight roams

Behind closed doors

 

We lie down

Beneath broken windows

Angels shake us awake

How many times can we pray?

 

Behind every eye

Is a boat ready to sink

We arrive at the ends of the earth

Skip past vacant lots

Paved over for winter

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cathy Porter’s poetry has appeared in Plainsongs, Homestead Review, California Quarterly, Hubbub, Cottonwood, Comstock Review, and various other journals. She has two chapbooks available from Finishing Line Press: A Life In The Day (2012), and Dust And Angels (2014). Her latest chapbook, Exit Songs, was published in 2016 from Dancing Girl Press, based in Chicago. Her latest collection, 16 Days, is forthcoming from Dancing Girl Press in 2019. Cathy is a two-time Pushcart Prize nominee, and serves as a special editor for the journal Fine Lines in Omaha, NE.