Ike Reality Blues

I like Ike Reilly really
but I can’t imagine his eggs
scrambled at noon, that gaunt Irish mouth
screaming all broken teeth
and car bombs. His love of pop tarts
going down with his toast

I know he belongs to the sweltering evening
and his hollowpoint eyes are hungry
for the moment the moment
will fill him just one more time
with enough to make it to the finish line

first Vica and plastic and hip hop thighs
shot up through the alleys
of veins each one searching the puddles of scum
for the fountain of youth
something you can drink while you’re on your knees
that doesn’t taste like it was 62

But he keeps running off sleep
like it’s the devil or a god you trick
skating through discretion
and salesmen and jokes
and racists calling the shots you have to down
for street cred cum the morning burn

I’ve wanted Ike’s cool wanted it for years
I thought I’d get some one night at the Ave

But he just kept pissing
and reading the walls
acknowledging that he was
completely alone

* * * * *

Michael K. Gause has taught German, sold men’s clothes, stocked diapers at midnight, and served coffee to people he hopes never to see again. He was once told he’d never write anything good. Last year he was nominated for a Pushcart Prize. He figures that makes things square. He assumes responsibility for two chapbooks and is creator and host of The Dishevel’d Salon, a monthly gathering of Twin Cities artists.

His other contributions to Snake-Oil Cure can be found here.

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