I get an email from the very nice man
who published one of my books.
“Mather, did you move to Mexico?
I need to know where to send your royalty check.
Hope you’re having a good time.”
I read it on the toilet
in this crappy hotel
while a spider runs across my foot.
It’s the third day
from a reaction to antibiotics
that the dentist prescribed here in Hermosillo
after ripping out 3 molars.
I’m worried about a gut infection
called Clostridium Difficile.
“C Diff” is the cute nickname for it
in the online medical chatrooms.
They say excrement from C Diff is so foul
you will never forget it once you’ve smelled it,
it will give you nightmares
and has been known to make the most
callous nurse shudder and cry.
The last royalty check I received
That was 6 months ago
when I still had a mailbox
and a job
and all my teeth.
I didn’t cash it.
It’s still there
between the pages
of Don Quixote
to keep me from forgetting my place.
HERE’S TO US
Boy we are cute
And we are pretty durned
clever, cool as
lilacs in Cleveland.
What’s not to love
between the look
of our handwriting
and the smell
of our farts?
I refuse to believe
we could get any slicker
or become better dressers
or come up
with a better hair style
or a lower way
to wear our jeans.
I mean really
what we’ve got now is
perfect. We deserve to just take
on our own greatness.
For 2 hours you sit trying to work
up the nerve to call a call-girl.
You dial 3 digits of a phone number,
hang up. You dial 5 digits next time,
hang up. Malarial with adrenaline.
Finally, all 7 numbers and an answering
machine: you come up
with a code-name delivered
in a macho pitch. You hold your hand
on the phone for a while after. Later
the clock tells you it was all a dream
and you’re looking out the window
when the ring jumps up your rectum. Hell-
o? When she asks for Don, you blush,
then she sells herself like a blurb
on a video box. She asks obligatorily
if you’re a cop, then drops an hourly
number like hot oil in your ear,
2-day’s pay but no haggling.
You catch your breath as the truth
sinks in. You say ok.
And then there’s nothing left
but details: a time slot; your major
cross streets; where she should park.
THE PUSSY NEVER CAME DOWN
She had a harelip
You ever had a woman with a harelip?
He’s 40 something
face unctuous and bloated from alcohol.
She had a nice ass, he says
and a wad of money
and she needed a drink
so we bought two bottles of Mad Dog
and went to the park
and after we drank those we came in here
and that’s when she went crazy.
Well we got kicked out of here and then
went back to her hotel where
some other nutball broad was hanging out
and I thought shit
the pussy’s coming down
the pussy’s coming down
the pussy never came down.
I tell you what I was lucky
to get out of there with my life.
It’s amazing how they play you.
I met her at the Greyhound station.
I was buying a ticket to San Diego.
Fifty three bucks.
I’m leaving tomorrow.
I know this guy there who has a used car lot
and he needs someone to stand out by the road in a bear suit