poetryrepairs 16,09:102

JOHN GREY : The Bomber
JOHN GREY : Your Carnival

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The Bomber

Whatever the explosion accomplished was all within him. For the rest, merely the terror of knowing too late. A pungent madness in the air - even as he put together his weapons, he was already stumbling through debris. Heíd fallen in love with scorched earth. If they knew, most would be afraid but, here and there, a few would raise their fists, agree wholeheartedly. Such a jumble of opinions and convictions. It had nothing to do with race or politics. Thereís something beyond skin and belief - thereís those who run toward loud noise and others who run away from it. Then came the righteous intermingled with the self-righteous. They didnít like their people assaulted. Thereís nothing worse than having to blow the dust off houses. It could be a statement in theory but damaging in reality. Windows rattled is one thing but shattered quite another. The former can be good, the latter always involves someone having to pick up the bloody shards of glass. But thatís freedom for you. No one has to stand in the way, he reckoned. They could have huddled indoors. No one forced them to go out with targets on their brows. Nothing approaches the glamor of noise. Within even the safest of places lurks a touch of the apocalypse. Standing in the smoke of his masterworks, a damaged world spills at his feet. All it took was to place two very small boxes in some unsuspecting place. He had the tools and wallowed in the opportunity. His perspective was suddenly the law.

poetryrepairs #228 16,09:102

Your Carnival

Sorry I missed the human centipede. How many legs did you say protruded from his body? My carnivals were mostly innocuous rides, carefully scrutinized by local engineers, and hot dogs and burgers hidden from view of the local health inspectors. But you delighted in six-legged sheep, the pin-headed man and bearded lady and yes all-over- the-body tattoo guy but of course, Iíve seen his descendants on the streets. I took my first love on the Ferris wheel. Bodies elevated, closeness quickly followed. But you hustled your date into the freak tent. So whatís a girl to feel when confronted by the half-man, half woman. Redundant I reckon.

poetryrepairs #228 16,09:102


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JOHN GREY is an Australian poet, US resident. Recently published in New Plains Review, South Carolina Review, Gargoyle and Big Muddy Review with work upcoming in Louisiana Review, Cape Rock and Spoon River Poetry Review.