Ben Nardolilli: “Large Bull-Thistle”

 

 

Large Bull-Thistle

Looking up Chenango County,
It’s what I do at work, travelling through
The internet and coming across
Maps, images, and demographic data
For counties I’ll probably never go to

But I help out the people there,
Or who died there and whose families
Have moved on to other places,
They need their checks
And I make sure they get them

I know death unites us all,
Yet asbestos seems a runner-up,
I wonder if I’ve ever been exposed
And if some pale tumor
Is ready to bloom inside me because of it

Then I can join with the men
And women who died by similar means,
In Erie, in Albany, in Kings County,
In Warren, and in Wayne, finally,
Someone else can process a claim for me

 

 

About the Author: Ben Nardolilli currently lives in New York City. His work has appeared in Perigee Magazine, Red Fez, Danse Macabre, The 22 Magazine, Quail Bell Magazine, Elimae, The Northampton Review, Local Train Magazine, The Minetta Review, and Yes Poetry. He blogs at mirrorsponge.blogspot.com and is trying to publish a novel.

 

Image Credit: “Thistle” L Prang & Co. (1886) The Library of Congress