FNS: In A Desert Town by John Grey


Every Friday night we feature a short story, essay, personal narrative, poem,
spoken word, or short film for your enjoyment.

Tonight’s poem is from John Grey

The widow sits with her back
to the wall, sketches in the sand
between sips from her Tequila bottle.

In the rooms above,
a woman in a dress of paper taffeta
extracts bank notes from her garter.
With a wounded animal snarl,
she tosses them across the bed
in the direction of her dozing pimp.
Another night, another truckload of sweaty men.
She clamped an invisible handkerchief
between her teeth to get by.

A young couple share a cigarette
on the banks of the dry riverbed.
When it burns down to the end,
they part ways.

Another man grabs his woman,
presses her against the car,
slips his tongue deep into her mouth.
After a long, impassioned clench,
he shoves her into the passenger seat,
drives off in a pillow of dust.

The Virgin Mary
peers out from behind a cactus plant
in the red-skinned half-acre of the mission.

A lady in a fine dress of black lace
sits on the chapel steps,
dark hair swept up heavenward,
red pumps shaking down below.

John Grey is an Australian poet, US resident. Recently published in New Plains Review, Perceptions, Gargoyle and the anthology, No Achilles with work upcoming in Big Muddy Review, Main Street Rag and Spoon River Poetry Review.

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