“Hound Speak” By Damian Rucci

 

 

Hound Speak

At 3am
the hounds are let out for lunch
we bark, growl, bare teeth
howl at the lone cars on the highway

we’re comrades in this spiritual war
poor derelicts fighting to find self
in those hours before mourning

on those breaks in between
we drink what we can
sniff what we find, smoke
until our lungs combust

the ones who have it
take care of those who don’t

we jump in temporary freedom
until the time-clock
beckons us back inside

in those hours on the sales floor
you have time
to think, reflect
on all those dark things
you try and ignore in the sun

the things you say have weight
under those fluorescent lights
like bees buzzing between
your ears, you must address them

when the morning comes
we emerge, gaunt, pale
eyes cowering from the light
scurrying off to our homes

we sleep the day away
ignore the ones we love
carry the hurt, close to our chests
and breath again at midnight

this is less of a job
this is a way of life
we may not be able to hide
away from the world forever
but we sure are trying.

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About the Author: Damian Rucci’s work has recently appeared in Cultural Weekly, Beatdom, Big Hammer, and coffee shops and basements across the country. He is an author of three chapbooks and a split Former Lives of Saints with Ezhno Martin. Damian hosted the Poetry in the Port reading series, currently hosts the Belle Ringer Open Mic and is a poet in residence at the Osage Arts Community in Belle, Missouri. He can be reached at damian.rucci@gmail.com

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More by Damian Rucci: 

Melancholy & The Afterglow

One for Cory

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Image Credit: “Steeplechase Pier night, Atlantic City, New Jersey” Library of Congress, Prints & Photographs Division, photograph by John Margolies

“One For Cory” By Damian Rucci

 

 

One For Cory

I heard your brother
is down in the boonies
living in chicken shacks

hooked on the same shit
that took the air from your lungs

and left another son
without a father

will it ever end?

will the damned
be forsaken?
will you call me
again at 3 am looking to score?

The other night at McDonough’s Pub
I saw the old crew
we talked about you
and we never talked about you
when you died
we just let it haunt us

the boys are looking for more
to green grasses in other places
that don’t stink of poverty and death

the garden state
has more poppies than orchids
all the roses I’ve known
have bled and broken
trying to make it out
of the concrete

sometimes I smile
hoping that somewhere in celestial solace
you are on a stage that isn’t in drug court
that you’re singing and free again

that you finally learned the guitar

Cory I pray that somewhere
you are eighteen forever
that, that beautiful smile
never leaves your face

and you never know pain again

 

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About the Author: Damian Rucci’s work has recently appeared in Cultural Weekly, Beatdom, Big Hammer, and coffee shops and basements across the country. He is an author of three chapbooks and a split Former Lives of Saints with Ezhno Martin. Damian hosted the Poetry in the Port reading series, currently hosts the Belle Ringer Open Mic and is a poet in residence at the Osage Arts Community in Belle, Missouri. He can be reached at damian.rucci@gmail.com

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More by Damian Rucci: 

Melancholy & The Afterglow

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Image Credit: Thomas J Flagg “VIEW NORTHEAST- DETAIL OF BRIDGE TRUSSES, NEW TRACK SHOWN ADJACENT TO BRIDGE”  (1995) The Library of Congress

“Melancholy & The Afterglow” By Damian Rucci

 

 

Melancholy & The Afterglow

You can throw all the rocks
from here to Norwood Avenue
up to heaven but they’ll find
home again in the earth

maybe in different places, maybe
find new homes down the road
in the silk grasses of privilege
but they’ll always be covered in dirt

then why do we mourn dawn
hold on to the black skies
of transcendence as light rays
remind us we’re still ourselves?

They remind us that any
enlightenment that comes in a baggy
is another layer we hide truth behind

after all the higher you climb
the worse it hurts falling back down

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About the Author: Damian Rucci’s work has recently appeared in Cultural Weekly, Beatdom, Big Hammer, and coffee shops and basements across the country. He is an author of three chapbooks and a split Former Lives of Saints with Ezhno Martin. Damian hosted the Poetry in the Port reading series, currently hosts the Belle Ringer Open Mic and is a poet in residence at the Osage Arts Community in Belle, Missouri. He can be reached at damian.rucci@gmail.com

Image Credit: Walker Evans “Houses and Cemetery, Birmingham, Alabama” (1936) Digital image courtesy of the Getty’s Open Content Program.