Oyster Boy Review 08  
  January 1998
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» Levee 67


Fortytwo Dollars and Change

C. Earl Nelson

the tiger files his fangs;
mitch has trouble with heroin,
says he got more than he bargained for,

and fat rich appears out of nowhere
legs and right arm wrecked in a gasoline fire,
rants about andrea but refuses to hear
that beating her wasnt the way to fix himself
nor that her kind never change,

and monty
just finished
deuce on a nickle
for a shotgunning
ruled involuntary manslaughter,
asks if i can
spare some floorspace.

raquel is simply happy i made it back in one piece,
wants to drink and fuck but she kisses like a viper
says heliocentricity makes perfect sense to her vagina
begs me to orbit with fertile cuban eyes and magnificent ass.

jeff says i can have
the cab five days a week
and so ile go
back to the 12 hour grind
of late night monologues
with alcoholic corpses
& prostitutes,

the occasional carload
of sorority girls
giggling like twelveyearolds
and showing too much teeth;

fingering the hammer on a .32 revolver
as i slide deathlike into the quiet pitch
of a culdesac on fifth avenue
ready for the punk with gold teeth
and im not going easily—

slumped in the front seat
pockets pulled clean and divorced from
fortytwo dollars and change.