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The dogs are barking at the sky
And old John Antonia stumbles out of the bar.
He’s had too much wine
But he’s old and today he’s had himself a good ol’ time.
Dutch is lying in the gutter
It’s summer
And the sun is shining on his ass.
The mushroom lady, his wife finds him
And picks up a half-smoked butt.
She lights it and lets him sleep on.
Whitey has bought a brand new used pin-striped three piece
At the Salvation Army thrift store on E. Cordova today.
Two maybe three girls will fall in love with him today
And perhaps remember his name tomorrow.
John John walks into the 24 hr. liquor store, a sinner
He picks up two bottles of rye and comes back out, a bright halo above his head.
Gerard sold a stolen ‘78 Chevy to two Nigerians…
He’ll be buyin’ tonight.
Two young lovers attempt to make love in the bathroom
But are rudely interrupted by the barman.
The pool table is cracked down the middle
Someone’s head was too hard.
The one-percenters are out of business
And they’re as bored as the shark in the aquarium.
The gangsters are getting younger and skinnier.
“They don’t even know how to ride a bike”, says Bob.
They’ve threatened to kill the mushroom lady’s two kids last week.
She got scared and angry and drunk.
Yesterday, she walked into the Ivenhoe at around ten
And fired eight shots.
No one was killed, one man injured.
She has disappeared.
I’m sitting at the Funky Winkerbeans,
Brass dragons are staring at me from the bar’s railing.
The girls from the 1920’s New Orleans burlesque pictures are smiling at me.
James is down in Mexico,
Sending palm tree Christmas cards to the girls he calls ev’ry Saturday night.
The ladies onstage don’t wear any clothes.
One of them has a daughter that looks like young Rita Hayworth.
Trevor is passing out wolf tickets by the fire hydrant.
Stephan’s hepatitis is getting better
But he needs a new coat and he’s out of shoe polish.
Word on the street has it,
There’s been a fight at the mission.
Two natives were cut bad and rushed to the hospital.
Officer Munro stands proud next to the girls that used to be boys.
He’s smoking.
Ray points at a drunkard on his knees.
“Penicillin ain’t no cure for this man’s disease”, he says.
Whitey whistles from across the street,
A girl traipsing after him.
“She’s harder to get rid of then tattoos”, he says.
And Hank, he’s so lost,
He’s looking for bourbon in the 99-cent store.
—M. Littler

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