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  April 2014
volume 11 number 1
-table of contents-
  home   (archived)
  contributing poets
  Scott Alexander
  Shawn Aveningo
  Jonathan Beale
  Jack G. Bowman
  Betsy Burke
  Matt Burns
  Shibani Chattopadhyay
  Rachel Coventry
  Tyler Dupuis
  Allison Grayhurst
  John Grochalski
  Hedy Habra
  Samantha Henderson
  Augustus Invictus
  Natalie Itzhaki
  Scott Jacobson
  Alex Johnson
  Mikel K
  Craig Kurtz
  Phillip Larrea
  N.M. Leepsa
  Anthony Magistrale
  Brendan McCormack
  Christopher Mulrooney
  Philip ONeil
  Ebi Robert
  Walter Ruhlmann
  April Salzano
  Jake Sheff
  Rishan Singh
  Julia Stein
  Allen Taylor
  Paul Tristram
  Wanda Vanhoy Smith
  Claire Walker
  Viola Weinberg
  Claire Williams
  mailing list
John Grochalski
April 2014



photo by mauricio alejandro ramos

     John Grochalski is a published writer whose poetry and prose have appeared in several online and print publications including: Red Fez, Rusty Truck, Outsider Writers Collective, Underground Voices, The Lilliput Review, The Main Street Rag, Zygote In My Coffee, The Camel Saloon, and Bartleby Snopes.  I have two books of poetry The Noose Doesn't Get Any Looser After You Punch (Six Gallery Press) and Glass City (Low Ghost Press), and a novel, The Librarian forthcoming. His chapbook In the Year of Everything Dying can be viewed via Camel Saloon's Books on Blogs series



Garden of Eden

most of them sit on the porch
drooling onto the pavement
staring into the void of stillwell avenue

the care workers give them flowers to hold
coloring books and blankets

something to attract their attention

or they march them down the street
in slow, shuffling groups

grabbing the ones who go nuts when a loud truck passes
breaking up fights
between the few who dont get along

these are the sons and daughters of fine, upstanding citizens

this is only one idea of love
out of the many options that we always sully

they arent the forgotten ones

the ones who piss themselves
or have to have their asses wiped out in the open

but you hear things sometimes

like the one who ran into traffic
or the ones forced into giving head to a security guard
as he waited for his wife outside the local library

the one the teenagers tortured last month
the one who finally lost it all and set himself on fire

only no one knows where he got the matches

but most of them just sit on the porch in old lawn chairs
passing the hours drooling into the pavement

giving childlike smiles when people walk by
waving as if everyone were their best friend

they sit all day under a sign that reads
this is the garden of eden

residents of a paradise of sorts


unwitting participants in a cruel example of irony

if this is the kind of thing that passes for irony
these days.

copyright 2014 John Grochalski