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Chad's Heroin

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  • Chad's Heroin

    My hands smell like heroin
    Heroin smells like Chad, who I met
    Crying on the corner behind a charred and empty house
    A house that had caught fire last winter
    And burned up in a faulty electrical maelstrom
    Lost a tenant, lost appeal

    Lost Chad and I holding hands
    Praying on the corner
    Near the dust dry and peeling paint
    Near the cracked walls and bowled over fences
    We kneeled
    Caught in the rock and rhythm of the riverside

    Chad left his hairline behind a traffic cone, years ago
    The bumps kept rocking, knocking, plucking them out
    Allowing them to dance
    Until the sun rot got to them and the slug filled cement
    Forgot them
    Chad tells me
    He's tired

    Quiet boy
    Sleep now
    On my breast, dear brother
    My collar, my moat
    Your buoy at the finish line, floating loose, floating by

    Other customers filed in for the show
    Came out
    Heard not his song, read not his poem
    Just regarded his worth
    Stiff gods of gratuity
    What does he think he deserves?

    They came out, they'll pay to see

    “...Hollywood and hemlock, actors
    Chewing off your faces
    Be sound enough
    Be brave enough to catch the bluff...”
    Chad reads from his poem

    “Listen, the homeless man speaks!
    Wants us to eat out his heroin scented palms!”
    They say as they crowd in to regard

    He held them still, his hands
    Suppressing his lust, until they were bored enough
    Enticed enough to spoil him
    Walking away, leaving him
    Misunderstood
    Squeezing deaf drops of murder from their pulse-bare wallets
    Fueling the old curse on that hot summer solstice

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