Barrel Full of Monkeys


cartoons working from the inside

give back Popeye throwing up in a monsoon

as Olive Oyl uncorks cow eyes at Bluto

who wants to give up violence as a first response

but muscles give him a speech impediment

it makes him shy and gawky on the first day of school

staring out the window bored hoping the hills

will sprout Godzilla with a mouthful of TV sets

all tuned to PBS showing Brigette Bardot's French ass

winking telescope scrutiny for adolescent crossed legs

past playground forests of orange poles staked like grape arbors

we played in on our knees like badgers nesting in newspapers

and nudie magazines in the empty lot beside the Catholic church

or a horror movie gone soft and mushy in the middle

the way crayons left in car back window melted in sunlight

when we had sunlight instead of ozone warnings

and silverware behind our backs

sneaking up on Eichmann in his glass booth

blinking owl eyes at stacks of bodies

pretending to be leaves bristly as pick-up sticks

and nowhere to throw up dinner that grandma wouldn't find

a pair of jockey shorts filled with shit

because heaven had no outhouses

and a barrel full of monkeys still stinks
















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