We used to paint the town black,
Spin the wheels backwards
Those days when school was here
And work was there
And we were snagged on a nail between,
Hanging with the rust and mold—
What is and will be.
Pole dancing with the rusty cross—
Wind and rotten breath our music,
We taught the world how to dance.
Pissing Wild Irish Rose on the temple by Tombigbee,
To fill cracks in the brick and wash away the dust—
We painted a new shade of red
For Demopolis – the city of the people.
But we always looked good.
Freshening breath with Darvocet,
Injecting enough peace in our veins
To spread and pour like oil
Around the Vine and Olive Colony.
Throwing pizza to the dogs at Main and Cedar
Turning and tossing a “fuck you”
To Mary in her stained glass at St. Leo’s,
Her cracked hands guiding the way
To the nearest bar past the warped rail tracks.
Near Black Warrior, we’d take communion—
Seagram’s and a tablet of codeine—
Pray and puke the chunks on gravel,
Fall to our knees and bathe our faces
And our sins were washed clean.
In the city of the people.