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By Michael Derrick Hudson

To think I used to be so good at going to pieces

gobbling my way through the cops


and spooking what’s left of the girls. How’d I


get so far, sloughing off one knuckle at a time,

jerking my mossy pelt along


ruined streets? Those insistent, dreadful thuds


when we stacked our futile selves

against locked doors. Our mumbles and groans!


Such hungry nights! Staggering through the grit


of looted malls, plastered with tattered

flags of useless currency, I’d slobbered all over


the busted glass and merchandise of America …


But first you’ll have to figure out those qualities

separating what’s being alive from


who’s already dead. Most of you will flunk that.


Next learn how to want one thing over and over,

night after night. Most of you


are good at that. Don’t get tired. Don’t cough


into your leftovers. Don’t think. Always stand

by your hobgoblin buddies. Clutch


at whatever’s there. Learn to sniff out sundowns.


Source: Poetry (March 2015)

  • Living

Poet Bio

Michael Derrick Hudson
Michael Derrick Hudson lives in Fort Wayne, Indiana, where he works at the Genealogy Center of the Allen County Public Library.  See More By This Poet

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