"We all take for granted the sanctity of a sneeze"

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Issue 13: Free Form

Issue 12: The Necessary Ear

Issue 11: The Necessary Eye

Issue 10: Out on a Limb

Issue 9: The Missing Body

Issue 8: The Lily

Issue 7: Passages

Issue 6: No More Tears

S. Brady Tucker

When I Miss Wearing a Diaper

Do you remember the smell of your mother,
those dirty diapers hanging like inquisition martyrs,
the dread quiet of illness, the soft teddy bears, dead brother?
Remember Aunt Lena, who asked god to unscrew a stuck pickle jar?

We all take for granted the sanctity of a sneeze
and the sorrow, the lost and found nature, of a raspy cough.
I am tiny when I see the murder of an elk, the disemboweled wheeze,
the final open-eyed terror, the horror of that one fat and human-like tear drop.

See them? The bucket of friends, here, there, taken away from sleepovers,
the sin of my dislike of black licorice and canned vegetables and family dinner,
and one day I see my friend's face on the milk carton here, there, on the kitchen table,
                                                          recycled and torn, on the playground, then garbage in a gutter

that embraces the cardboard liner.

So many questions for me then: like, why don't automobiles have gender,
and how can an inky pink octopus be so tough and look so tender?


One American Girl in Cork

This is either:  one, a love poem.  Two, me

thinking out loud.  Bro, watch the rain come down

like some reminder of middling bartenders; wet

wet wet but no handouts and no house credit.  I am

walking and drinking (mostly drinking) down

every fucking street inCork and look, there she

is, but no.  She should be easy to find, this young

Floridian, this white orchid among purple wild

flowers.  Blast!  I must be drunk if I actually used

that metaphor.  Look, let's be honest.  What I am saying

here is this:  I am lovesick in a strange town, I am very

horny (watch out little Miss O'Connor!) and damnit, can't

I just have a little bit of spunky sex?   I know she

is out there somewhere, walking these same

cobbled streets with me.  If I am very

lucky, I will find her alone and off her guard.