Archive for the ‘John Sweet’ Category

Two Poems by John Sweet


keeps thinking about the desert
about getting high
about the girls he’s fucked in any number of
shithole apartments

finds the slight depression at the far
edge of the field where the horse was buried

no songs but the
songs of bees

the smell of lilies, of
dogwood and roses, clouds like mounds of
faceless corpses circling overhead and he
thinks he had a son

remembers watching the bus pull out of
the parking lot but has no
memory of it ever coming back

and so he’s stoned at the far edge of
summer, 85 miles an hour down the interstate,
hills in every direction, shredded tires from
eighteen-wheelers, crows at the roadkill,
all of these pointless metaphors for
a wasted life

he’s 25 and then he’s 43, a father and an
emotional cripple, sunburnt, unshaven,
no use for anyone’s god

he doesn’t support the war and he
doesn’t support the soldiers and he
doesn’t support the government

walls are walls, of course, and
every window is a target

the dogs are always hungrier when the
corpses are bulldozed into pits and burned
but he’s thinking about the desert,
you see,
or he’s thinking about a woman he still loves,
and the two have become interchangeable
in his mind

he’s thinking about this child he
may or may not have

about a poem he should but won’t write

he’s lost, yes, but only because
his eyes are closed

only because he never knew where he
was going in the first place



the swimmer

there is no breathing in
your grave, there is no sunlight,
no guilt

no language
despite what needs to be said and so
fuck you
and fuck your

idea of god

there is too much beauty here
to waste my life
dreaming of death




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Two Poems by John Sweet


and the days grown cold and
brittle with dust, with the blackened
shells of burned-out buildings

the bills set aside and ignored

the sunlight on dead trees,
on brown hills,
and the shadows of clouds
like the troubled thoughts of god

the telephone poles and power lines

put your faith in these
darker forms of magic

believe in the shotgun your father
kept in his closet, in this boy
bleeding to death out by the interstate

there is enough room in our
torn-open hearts for
all of this pain and more

holes through me

or the horse in yr
heart swimming through
oceans of pain
or the clocks that tell
only lies

this is you in dali’s room,
the end of the war,
corpses caught in frozen mud

you want them to sing
but the song has no words

you want them to apologize
but the words have no meaning

the mouths are
filled with gravel

with bloodsoaked truths

take the ones you need and
call them yr own

rape the priests who
would do you harm

let their despair be
all you need

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