The Innisfree Poetry Journal

by Ted Jean


teenage Kawasaki in the rocky river
blackberry canes wrapped
round his bleeding head

older Filipina rehab night nurse
wakes his dick
precisely three times
joy, whopping joy, life-affirming knockout joy

ensuing fifty wheelchair years
produce no further bliss
but satisfaction of a sort
with work and cigarettes and vodka

shitting easy as anybody
wiping Herculean
shower Saturday ordeal
full ashtray patio Sunday

heart attack doctor
prescribes assisted living
our boy mutters he’d rather die
swears off eating, mistress alcohol

jokes with doting hospice nurse
who leaving strokes his hair
then, the final nap
safely around the curve above the rocky river

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