Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Howie Good: “Lost in America,” “The Hit,” and “The Fallacies of Hope”

Lost In America

Women in those days carried tear-gas pens in their pocketbooks. There wasn’t much work around even for a person with two advanced degrees. The bus departed from underneath the Port Authority building at eight that night. If you asked, I couldn’t have told you the difference between a casket and a coffin. The homeless lived in the corners of the cavernous waiting room. I should have taken something for pain. When I woke up, it was snowing in Ohio.

The Hit

My youngest daughter, tormented by visions of burning airships, trips the metal detector. I feel like an empty gray glove. Strangers crowd into the elevator with us. Only later do they think to ask if we’re going down. The weather has turned. Buds pop, a nation of suicide bombers in dynamite vests.

So this how I’ll die, stabbed repeatedly by dry droplets of fiery rain. Someone you know well will also be caught in the storm.

I had just put my key in the door when two men in sunglasses walked up behind me. Was it because my mother was my father as well? The one who looked most like a paid assassin made a gun with his fingers and pressed it against the small of my back. They asked each other and then me what to do next. If I have to wear a tie, I said, I won’t go. There was never a stripper named Naked Truth, but there should have been.

The Fallacies Of Hope

A guidebook
to Belgium.

4,000 killed here.

that by some
strange act

become farms
and buildings.

The sun
is god

with ether.

(Howie Good’s latest chapbook is Threatening Weather, available as a free audio book and e-book from Whale Sounds.)