i remember sitting
in your provisionally furnished
unliving room
piled high with alphabetized stacks
of your personal and professional failures
balanced atop a neurotic collection
of pizza boxes
and coffee cans welded
into homemade torture devices

watching you waller bare assed
on your unfortunate chair
sipping coffee smoking pot
planning on bourbon
complaining no one takes your abuse
in a manner that suits your liking

i found myself wishing to be in a place
with anyone but you
to be anywhere but there
shaking out a rug
airing a mattress
applying pine sol to the length of route 80

to cleanse the earth
of your doomsday pestilence

knowing myself to be a fool
for buying into your bottom shelf poems
and cock strong swagger
my feet swiftly found an escape tunnel

but i kept a picture of you
in your dirtiest jeans
exposing your minimalist views
on having teeth
then drove into the city

had it blown up parade balloon size
and hung it up like scarecrow
a warning to all women
over the cosmetics counter at macy’s