Take my shirt off, twist the sweat over

the acreage, under my undesirable ceiling,

before they come and place more burdens upon me.

More ancestral strain, the thick skinned buffalypso

won’t mind the lashes to come.

The time, malarial, puts me in an everlasting chokehold,

poor man walks all this way to come see me, “how about you

put a smile on that scarecrow, that will scare them off.” My back

aches so bad I don’t feel it, I hear it. I hear the marrow wail like

my Jane did when the horse fell on her, I hear the crack of my spine,

body talking of slight angry discomfiture. Sure I’m blessed.

I feel the shock-zing of my toes as they grab hold to the rotting wooden floor,

unable to de-curl themselves from default boot position.

My pain is not your pain, my work is not your work, but my land your land

and that hallucinated history you set up before me, a mirage to my

lifelong deserted life, is as real as Buddha in the islands cutting cane.

Hate built up, but happy I’ll be, Alleluia.

A hatefully happy man, Alleluia.

They told me I’ll need some sort of assurance, like that of insurance.

I said all I need is blessed assurance, but the clever one with a desk

made it clear that the only assurance of a blessing in this time of need

is that of insurance, and apparently it’s one of those things that Jesus does not

provide. Now, if I pay insurance, I can’t fix my roof, if I can’t fix my roof

the rain won’t just knock, it invites itself in, it pulls up a chair and dances up a rapture,

so what kind of assurance is that?

With hate built up all this time there’s no room left, so happy I’ll be, Alleluia.

A hatefully happy man, Alleluia.

Take my glasses off and rest my eyes, test my eyes, bless my eyes

and hope, but not too much, that this rest might be for good.

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