Collective Unrest

 

Flying Home From Indiana After Driving Past the KKK House in Irvington

October 3, 2018

I want to tell you it’s comforting
to cry your eyes out on an airplane
because the jet turbines to your left
and the raindrops beating against the window
make your tears sound faraway,

but I feel like a birthday party clown
smoking a cigarette in the alley outside the bar
who just popped his colored balloons,
becoming one with the soft September night
with the orange embers falling into the dark.

The family in the row behind me puts their heads down,
afraid that empathy is a disease they might catch,
that maybe if they just look away for long enough
my tears won’t consolidate into the Blob from 1958
and eat them like angsty teens. I want to shut the fuck up

and stare with a poorly painted mask
into the purple clouds, but I can’t seem to forget
about the brick path in the back of my nightmare.

The one that curves down the hill
past the long white house
into infinite nothingness –

the woods, the grass, the primroses
with their heads cut off.

 

Austin Davis is a poet, writer, and spoken word artist from Mesa, Arizona. Austin’s poetry has been widely published in literary journals and magazines, both in print and online. Most recently, Austin’s work can be found in Pif Magazine, Ink in Thirds, Folded Word, The Poetry Shed, In Between Hangovers, One Sentence Poems, and Tuck Magazine. Austin’s first chapbook, “The Moon and Her Ocean,” was published in 2017 by Fowlpox Press. “Cloudy Days, Still Nights,” Austin’s first full length book of poetry, was published in May, 2018 from Moran Press. His second poetry book, “Second Civil War,” (also from Moran Press) was published in September, 2018.

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